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MBJ FEATURE

Back in the saddle

After two years away, Usry forges ahead with new dealership Joe Usry has been selling cars since 1978. Other than a short stint as a postman, it’s the only job he’s had since he graduated from Scott Central High School. So when he sold his interest in Boyte-Usry Honda two years ago and found himself with nothing to do, there ...

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Waide sitting out 2011 races

For most of 2010, David Waide’s name came up in any conversation about candidates for statewide office in 2011. Waide, immediate past president of the Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation, extinguished that speculation last week when he told the crowd at Farm Bureau’s annual meeting that he would not seek any office in 2011. “I’m going back home,” Waide, who had ...

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Huddle Houses getting new look, more seating

Atlanta restaurant chain doing remodels, new construction in growth markets Huddle House is getting a new look in Mississippi, as the Atlanta-based chain of 24/7 diners expands seating in its new stores, restyles exteriors and debuts a new logo. The footprint of the stores won’t change much, but the newest Huddle Houses and the ones that undergo remodeling will have ...

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Hall of Fame career ain’t over just yet

Real estate pro, Mark Cumbest, brings home more hardware Obvious. It was obvious that Mark Cumbest was destined to make headlines and garner honors before his real estate career had even begun. Thirty-five years later, the Coast commercial Realtor, who established his own real estate firm at the age of 21, is still racking up the awards. “I don’t know ...

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Location, location, location

Usry: Spot off I-55 a prime reason this is a great opportunity For the first time in his career, Joe Usry is the majority stockholder of a car dealership, after having been the minority partner in several. So what’s the difference between the two? “More stock and more debt,” Usry said, laughing. Usry opened his Chrysler dealership Nov. 15 on ...

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Mississippi banks show strength in Bauer ratings

Heritage, Cadence get the lowest grades Five-star ratings are plentiful among Mississippi’s community banks in Bauer Financial’s third quarter ratings released last Tuesday, though a handful of weak links remain: zero-rated Heritage Banking Group of Carthage, one-star rated Cadence Bank in Starkville and two-star institutions Peoples Bank of the South in Bude and OmniBank in Mantee. The Coral Gables, Fla.-based ...

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Shareholders give nod to Candence merger

Vote cleared the way for a first quarter acquisition by Houston banking investment group Community Bancorp Shareholders of Cadence Financial Corp., parent of Cadence Bank, agreed to a buyout last Thursday that takes the banking company private and pays them $2.50 in cash per Cadence common share. The shareholder vote in Starkville marked a key step in the troubled regional ...

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New law forbids hidden rate deals

The Mississippi Public Service Commission has voted unanimously to adopt a rule to “discourage the practice of filing non-confidential information confidentially” by public utilities. Under this rule, information pertaining to rate impacts to customers cannot be hidden from the public view. Confidential document filing became an issue during hearings and discussions regarding Mississippi Power Company’s $2.4 billion lignite coal plant, ...

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‘No more Easter egg hunts’

Law would keep utilities from sponsoring frivolous events with customers’ money Last month, the state agency that regulates public utilities voted to consider tightening rules that have allowed utilities to be reimbursed by customers for donations made to charities. At a Tuesday (Dec. 7) public meeting, the Mississippi Public Service Commission discussed a proposed rule requiring that public utilities: >> ...

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Free program, few takers

MDA extends deadline due to lack of applicants The Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) is convinced that its new, free pilot program for entrepreneurs targeting some of the most economically depressed areas of the state will be a winner. Now, the state’s lead economic and community development organization looks to woo more entrepreneurs and small business owners into the intensive training ...

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