By Associated Press - Friday, July 29, 2016

LAUREL, Miss. (AP) - The mayor of Laurel has vetoed a five-year tax exemption for poultry producer and processor Wayne Farms.

WDAM-TV reports ( ) that Mayor Johnny Magee vetoed the ordinance Thursday.

The company has laid off nearly 600 employees this year, prompting months of debate about whether it should get an exemption.

It asked for a $9 million break over 10 years, but the council voted 5-2 for a five-year version totaling just under $6 million.

Magee says oil industry troubles had resulted in record unemployment in Jones County, and Wayne Farms’ layoffs just made things worse.

The council could bring the matter up for an override vote at Tuesday’s regular meeting.

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