Monday, February 19, 2018
There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them:
- The Better Together Commission, a 15-member group tasked with studying the Jackson Public School District, hired Insight Education Group to conduct a 10-month study of the second largest district in the state.
- Rep. Trey Lamar, R-Senatobia, introduced legislation to entice recent college graduates to live and work in the state; it passed the House unanimously on Wednesday.
- Proposed legislation to crack down on gangs statewide could lead to increased prison costs, a move that would counteract the state's progress in decreasing the number of inmates—and taxpayer dollars used to incarcerate those inmates—since 2014.
- Mississippi law enforcement may soon be able to decide young people are a gang even if they're not part of a larger criminal enterprise with a hierarchy and criminal connections.
- Rep. Jason White, R-West, developed the House Medicaid proposal, which would require the division to re-bid out contracts for the managed-care program. The measure passed out of the House with bipartisan support.
- A month has passed since Jackson held its first Equal Business Opportunity Review Committee hearing to mediate a dispute between the larger Massachusetts-based company, Veolia North America - South, LLC, and Fisher Construction of Jackson.
- Ward 4 Councilman De’Keither Stamps proposed decriminalizing simple possession of marijuana in Jackson to free up police resources to focus on other crimes and to reduce the number who go to jail for small amounts.
- Rep. Bill Kinkade, R-Byhalia, passed House Bill 1172 out of his committee. It gives MDOC the flexibility necessary to assign case plans to all parole-eligible inmates since 2014.
- Sen. Kevin Blackwell, R-Southaven, wanted to change and standardize the terms of elected school-board members, but a bipartisan group in the Senate killed his bill on deadline day.
- Mississippians with enhanced concealed-carry licenses, who are required to take an instructional course on firearms training before they receive their license, could file a lawsuit against public entities, like state agencies or universities, with policies limiting their right to carry a gun if House Bill 1083 becomes state law.