Mississippi lawmakers are starting to look at agencies’ budget requests for the coming year.
The Joint Legislative Budget Committee is holding public hearings Monday. It’s an early step in writing a state spending plan for the 2020 budget year, which begins in July.
Mississippi’s current budget is just over $6 billion. The budget office says that for first two months of the fiscal year, state revenue was $17.8 million, or 2.6 percent, higher than predicted.
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State schools Superintendent Carey Wright focused her pitch to lawmakers Monday on more money for state-funded preschool and more ways to improve teaching and school leadership, barely glancing over the state’s underfunded school formula.
Wright asked lawmakers to provide more money for public-private preschool networks, coaches to improve reading instruction, a new statewide computer data system and efforts to help superintendents and principals. Those various proposed increases would cost about $11.5 million. She said that improving test scores and graduation rates show lawmakers are getting a good return on previous spending and should keep investing.
She only briefly mentioned the cost to fully-fund Mississippi’s K-12 funding formula, which would require a projected additional $250 million on top of the $2.2 billion the state is spending this year. Wright is required by law to ask for full funding, but the state Supreme Court has ruled lawmakers aren’t required to follow a law demanding they appropriate the full amount.
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#MSSen: Hyde-Smith hits McDaniel over Trump comments as White House says it was “insulting”
I know our president, and the only person making decisions for Donald Trump is Donald Trump. If @SenatorMcDaniel believes @realDonaldTrump is so easily manipulated, how can we trust him to support the president’s agenda? ??? pic.twitter.com/EOWKfwiT9D
— Cindy Hyde-Smith (@cindyhydesmith) September 17, 2018
#MSSen: Espy interviews with Glaude on ‘Words Matter’ podcast
— Mike Espy (@espyforsenate) September 17, 2018
#MS04: Anderson kicks off ‘People’s Tour’
The J-Train has left the station! #MS04 we are coming to meet you!! Look for our campaign bus on the road and pulling into your town soon.
— Jeramey Anderson for Congress (@JerameyForMS) September 17, 2018
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AG Hood urges Congress to reauthorize Violence Against Women Act
— Jim Hood (@AGJimHood) September 17, 2018