Leaders of about half of the U.S. states and territories are gathering on the Mississippi Gulf Coast this weekend for the National Governors Association summer convention.
Among the governors skipping the meeting are Republicans Sarah Palin of Alaska, Arnold Schwarzenegger of California, Mark Sanford of South Carolina and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.
Governors will discuss health care, education, transportation and the economy. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is scheduled to speak Sunday.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour says this is the first time since 1935 for his state to host a national governors' convention.
Barbour says most expenses are being paid by corporate sponsors. He didn't have an estimate for how much Mississippi is spending for the Highway Patrol to provide security.