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U.S. HVAC hit hard by worker shortage

By TED CARTER Perhaps there’s no happier sight for a Mississippian with a broken air conditioner in July or kaput heating system in January than the arrival of an HVAC professional. So why does the heating, ventilation and air conditioning industry suffer from low self-esteem and difficulties attracting new workers? Call it the “left behind” skill set, says Erin McCollum, ...

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Copiah-Lincoln Community College sees steady enrollment in HVAC

By TED CARTER Eighteen schools in Mississippi are giving assistance to a U.S. heating, ventilation and air conditioning industry starved for new workers. The schools, most of which are community colleges, offer programs designed to address a skills gap that could stall commercial and residential construction in Mississippi if not filled. At the Wesson campus of Copiah-Lincoln Community College, 20 ...

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Mississippi shortage of construction workers becoming more acute

By BECKY GILLETTE With U.S. unemployment rates at the lowest levels seen in 17 years, the shortage of Mississippi construction workers has gone from bad to worse. Mississippi Construction Education Foundation (MCEF) President Mike Barkett said the construction worker shortage has become more acute because the economy has picked up. “There are more and more opportunities for construction contracts, but ...

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Mississippi homes sales good despite increasing interest rates

By BECKY GILLETTE Predictions that the housing market in Mississippi would be good for both buyers and sellers this year apparently have been borne out despite higher mortgage interest rates and concerns about a short supply of homes available for sale, particularly in the affordable range. Mississippi Realtors President for 2018, Karen Glass, who is also a managing broker for ...

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Times have changed but Watkins still fully invested

By NASH NUNNERY Adam Watkins officially launched his real estate career the day he graduated from William Carey College (now University) nearly two decades ago. There were no smart phones, text messaging, Realtor.com or Zillow. The highest tech tool used in real estate transactions was the fax machine. Comparatively, the process of buying and selling homes now is immersed in ...

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Argent Trust, Wealth Services open Oxford office

Argent Trust Co. and its Argent Family Wealth Services have opened a new office in Oxford. The location at 613 South Lamar Boulevard, a National Historic Landmark building, accommodates a larger staff who provide a wider range of wealth management services. Family Wealth Services Managing Director Mark Hartnett will lead the expanded team and focus on further growing Argent’s presence ...

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The Quarter in Jackson undergoing transformation, adding apartments

By JACK WEATHERLY The Quarter is getting a new look and a new function. The retail and office center on Lakeland Drive in Jackson just west of the Pearl River is becoming a mixed-use development. The StateStreet Group is adding 12 loft apartments, expanding some retail space and giving The Quarter’s facades a fresh look. The Quarter was built in ...

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The Lamar will offer Oxford neo-Southern

By JACK WEATHERLY Oxford is growing. In many cases, that means sprawl, anathema for city planners. But for this college town (the University of Mississippi for you extraterrestrials) with its classic Southern architecture The Lamar will be an “extension” of the town square and all its history and amenities, said Kimberly Sharp, consultant for the developers. “We don’t in any ...

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