Aberdeen, Miss. (Monroe Journal) –
Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann made back-to-back local stops Aug. 27, speaking to the Rotary Club first and secondly at two Belle-Shivers Middle School classrooms.
His school visit educated students about his office’s new Promote the Vote campaign, which strives to reverse lower voter turnout. His office’s assistant communications director, Leah Rupp Smith, said before the trip to Aberdeen that the classroom visits were intended to encourage students to talk to their parents about the importance of voting.
Hosemann, who has been in office since 1990, centered his Rotary Club remarks on poll results taken among Mississippi businesses to get a reading on what issues were most important to them. The 1,800 replies he received generated his talking points, and 93 percent of the results came from businesses with 50 employees or less.
Hosemann used a slideshow to illustrate wish list items most important to the poll’s participants. The most sought-after attribute, by far, was an educated workforce, followed by good work ethics, honesty and technical skills. Hosemann’s research further yielded that only 22 percent of Mississippi’s workforce has a college degree.
“Good schools and reasonable wages seem the best ways to retain an educated workforce,” he said. “Our future is in graduates that are proficient in technology, not sports stars,” he said.
Hosemann underscored the critical need for technology proficiency by saying half of today’s jobs will no longer exist by the year 2030.
He also called attention to a website he set up, Y’all Business, which aids small business development in Mississippi.
“We’re the only secretary of state’s office that is totally online,” he said. “The filing fee for a limited liability company is $50. It’s the cheapest and fastest in the country.”
He wrapped up his program by saying the 2020 Census is rapidly approaching, and his parting appeal was two-fold.
“Don’t throw away that census form and be sure to go vote,” he said.