KILN, MISS: Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission gathered feedback from existing tenants and prospects in 2021 about the need to improve fire services in Port Bienville Industrial Park. The results found that Port Bienville Industrial Park lacked the equipment, water capacity and services for existing and new industry which resulted in a Class 10 fire rating. The fire rating is a public protection classification applied to eligible properties located within the West Hancock Fire District boundary.
In 2022, HCPHC and West Hancock Fire District began working on a long-term agreement to improve equipment and coverage at the fire station that serves Port Bienville Industrial Park. By October 2022 all parties agreed to staff the fire station Monday through Friday; providing 40-hour-a-week coverage and purchasing a new fire truck at an annual cost of $108,000.00.
As a result of the newly staffed fire station and fire truck, HCPHC was able to work with the Hancock County Board of Supervisors to adopt and create a new Port Bienville Grading District. The Port Bienville Grading District allowed the Mississippi Fire Rating Bureau to improve Port Bienville’s fire rating class from a class 10 to a class 7. The improvements made to equipment and staffing at the fire station qualified the grading district to receive a lower rate. The new rating not only means tenants of Port Bienville Industrial Park have improved response and safety, but will qualify tenants for lower insurance coverage rates.
HCPHC and our partners at West Hancock Fire District, Hancock County Water & Sewer District and the Hancock County Board of Supervisors are continuing to work to improve services to Port Bienville Industrial Park. All parties are currently working to improve water capacity at the port which will continue to impact the fire classification from the Mississippi Rating Bureau.
The Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission was established in 1963 to lead the county’s economic
development activities. Stennis International Airport and Port Bienville Industrial Park are home to 30 companies
with more than 1,000 employees. For more information visit www.portairspace.com.