Members of the Mississippi Legislature have jumped into the middle of serious and historic problem that the City of Jackson has grappled with over the last year—whether or when law-enforcement officers who shoot and/or kill non-police should be identified.
After asking for more than a year, the Jackson Free Press finally received the names and current status of Jackson police officers who shot people in the capital city since Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba became mayor in July 2017.
We can understand the need to protect officers and their families, but it is not acceptable to allow it based on a reason shrouded in secrecy.
The Jackson Free Press, and its editors and journalists, have come under fire many times since we launched 16 years ago in Mississippi's capital city.
This week the Mississippi Department of Corrections will host a re-entry symposium in Jackson, a necessary step to re-engage stakeholders involved with the criminal justice system, from lawmakers and mental-health professionals to judges and experts.
We now get even less information about officer-involved shootings. The Mississippi Bureau of Investigations does not have to disclose information concerning any open or closed investigations except to law enforcement.
The sickest part of our elections is that people who run campaigns don't think voters here are very smart or that they have evolved at all as an electorate in recent decades.
Despite recent catastrophes, the Jackson City Council has been using its fund balance or "rainy-day" fund for city-clerk salaries and festivals—items that are fundamentally non-essential.
Now that a promising young woman has died because of a massive systems failure in the City, allow us to repeat ourselves: This administration cannot afford to be reactionary to the mounting issues in the City.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers are arresting more undocumented immigrants now than under the previous administration—nonviolent undocumented men and women as Donald Trump uses scare tactics about dangerous immigrant gangs to justify deportations and splitting up families for just the crime of being undocumented.
If you haven't paid attention to the proposed flood-control/development project called "One Lake" along the Pearl River, now is the time to help vet the ambitious plan.
Ward 3 Councilman Kenneth Stokes, dare we say, stoked the fire at last week's Jackson City Council meeting during the heated conversation on moving the Jackson Zoo.
Bipartisan criminal-justice reform is something to sing about, and we applaud the Mississippi Legislature and the governor for passing and signing House Bill 387 into law this session.
Gephyrophobia translates into fear of bridges, and it's perfectly rational for Mississippians around the state to be suffering from that phobia following the closure of more than 100 "dangerous" bridges.
There's a modern-day adage that is good advice for the Lumumba administration: "Stay ready so you don't have to get ready."
The 2018 legislative session's story largely revolves around Republicans' inability to get a lot done due to failed negotiations between the House and the Senate.
When it comes to police transparency, Jackson is on a volatile tectonic plate that could cause tremors at any moment. Especially when City officials are the ones off-kilter and inconsistent.
There are two sides to the proverbial Project EJECT coin: what the public hears and what actually happens.
Constituents need to hold lawmakers accountable who are more interested in scoring political points than they are about ensuring women, especially black women, are protected.
Bravo to the Mississippi Senate for actually listening to their constituents and killing the Uniform Per Student Funding Formula proposal.
Mayor Lumumba's order does not address the glaring need for JPD to release names of officers who use excessive and/or fatal force on civilians—the progressive needle does not move without this transparent practice, which departments around the country embrace often within 48 or 72 hours of an incident.
Current state law allows a Mississippian with an enhanced concealed-carry license to carry their firearms into polling places, government meetings, college athletic events, bars, elementary schools, airport terminals and college campuses.
Four years ago, the Legislature patted itself on the back for reforming Mississippi's criminal-justice system with sweeping legislation that was arguably one of the most impactful pieces of public policy passed in recent years.
The notion of "school choice" is deeply embedded in the Capitol this session. Senate Education Chairman Gray Tollison, R-Oxford, wants to expand the state's voucher program drastically, allowing any child in public school to use a voucher next year.
It didn't take two women who can't get payment for hauling nasty sludge from a wastewater-treatment plant to convince the Jackson Free Press that the City's contracting system is a mess, and ripe for abuse and corruption.
After lawmakers went home in April 2017, there were no public meetings, hearings or presentations to offer clues as to whether the Republican supermajority planned to use all, part, some or none of EdBuild's suggested changes to the state's education funding formula.
Ever since Gov. Phil Bryant gave his "State of the State" address, and "Mississippi Today" chose to factcheck it but not the Democratic respondent, the media circuit around the capitol as well as some state lawmakers have been busy debating whether it is possible to be both nonpartisan and unbiased.
The new year ushered in a freezing cold front that put our pipes and infrastructure to the test. Seeing that we're in the second week of the year and also week two of a system-wide boil-water notice, Jackson didn't quite pass.
From kindergarten to colleges and universities, education expenses make up more than half of the state's proposed budget.
As this year comes to a close, so will Jackson Police Chief Lee Vance's 30-year career in the Jackson Police Department, who announced his retirement on Dec. 20.