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Officials favor new operator for Mississippi zoo

January 24, 2019

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Officials in Mississippi’s capital city are choosing a new operator for the Jackson Zoo.

Jackson chief administrative officer Robert Blaine says officials want a St. Louis organization, ZoOceanarium, to take over the troubled zoo.

News outlets report that the city council is expected to vote on the proposal next week. Financial details have not been released.

ZoOceanarium provides management for animal attractions around the world.

The company would replace the Jackson Zoological Society, which has operated the zoo since the 1980s.

Officials revealed last summer that the society’s then-director Beth Poff misused state money to cover operating expenses. She later resigned. City officials were also upset the society was considering moving the zoo from its west Jackson site, where it has been for about 100 years.

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