WJTV – Governor Phil Bryant appoints new State Auditor

DAILY JOURNAL – AP Analysis: Bryant appointments could shape Mississippi future

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant readily acknowledges he’s in office today partly because he got a hand up from his mentor, Republican former Gov. Kirk Fordice.

Now, Bryant could be shaping the state’s political future by reaching down and helping other politicians advance their careers…

…If Hyde-Smith, Gipson and White win election to their appointed jobs and even if they move onto other offices, they could be the longest-lasting part of Bryant’s legacy.


MBJ – Bill Crawford: PERS financial soundness not so hunky-dory after all

Despite annual comments from PERS leadership, particularly outgoing Executive Director Pat Robertson, that everything was hunky-dory, this new bump in employer contributions reveals either the naivety or the deception of those comments.  
PERS is worse off now than seven years ago and heading down hill. The funding level is hovers at 61%, the funding gap has jumped to nearly $17 billion from $12 billion, and the number of retirees drawing out has steadily increased while the number employees paying in has actually decreased. (For a detailed analysis, see the recent Jackson Jambalaya blog on PERS.)…
…Meanwhile, legislative leaders, particularly Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, have kept their heads buried in the sand on PERS. As State Treasurer, Reeves was a PERS board member from 2003 through 2011, so observed PERS deterioration first hand. Through their inaction, Reeves and his colleagues will see taxpayers hit with an extra $100 million to fund PERS.
Escalating costs to fund a flawed retirement plan are what caused Barbour to create his study commission. If legislative leaders had acted on the commission’s recommendations, PERS would be in better shape and retirees more secure. 
Reckon legislators and retirees will fall for this new “fix” too?

VICKSBURG POST – Fired Clarksdale workers file lawsuit alleging bias against white city employees

Barely touching the one-year milestone of the mayor holding office, the City of Clarksdale is facing a lawsuit by three former city employees who allege they were terminated because of racial discrimination.

Three former employees – Obert Douglas, Joseph Cobb Gibbs, and Curtis Boschert – allege that they were fired on July 10, 2017 because they were white…

…According to the complaint, on the day that city officials made the decision to fire Douglas, Gibbs, and Boschert, Mayor Chuck Espy broke the tie that resulted in the firing of the three in a vote that split along racial lines. Commissioners Ed Seals and Willie Turner, Jr., voted “aye” whereas Ken Murphy and Timothy “Bo” Plunk voted “nay.”

#MSSen: Baria political director talks campaign strategy with MS Today


Dickie Scruggs praises state Sen. Brice Wiggins, takes jab at Empower’s Grant Callen


Ag Commissioner Gipson previews GenuineMS program to be launched this week


WTOK – Special session likely this summer for Miss. legislature

Governor Phil Bryant says he is getting closer to calling a special session for infrastructure.

He notes that they were previously awaiting decisions from the Supreme Court regarding internet sales tax collections and sports betting.

Bryant plans to add a state lottery to the special session agenda, as well.