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City earns first Entertainment District designation

MERIDIAN — Meridian Mayor Cheri Barry, along with Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, announced yesterday Meridian’s designation of an Entertainment District.

The City of Meridian is the first city in the State of Mississippi to receive the designation.

Under the Entertainment District Act, a local governing body may apply for an area to be deemed as an entertainment district through the Mississippi State Tax Commission. After the designation is approved, businesses can construct or renovate a venue and receive a tax break in the form of an accelerated depreciation deduction, potentially saving developers thousands in taxes.

Under the new law, the state would recoup the lost revenue by mandating businesses who take advantage of the accelerated depreciation deduction assess a $2 ticket fee on every ticket sold.

“This legislation is the first and only of its kind throughout the nation,” said Hosemann. “It is my hope other cities across the state will take a look at the good example set by Meridian and follow in its lead of taking advantage of this economic development incentive.”

The Entertainment District Act, or House Bill 1623, was passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor in 2009.

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