WTVA – Analysis: Mississippi gov wants scrutiny of prison spending

Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves has ordered a thorough review of spending in the state Department of Corrections, questioning whether money has been wasted in a prison system that has been plagued by violence and shoddy living conditions for some inmates.

“I am, if nothing else, a budget hawk,” Reeves told reporters Thursday in Jackson. “I hate spending other people’s money.”

Reeves inherited a mess with the prison system when he took office last month. It’s one partly of his own making because he was lieutenant governor the past eight years and had a significant role in writing laws and setting state budgets.



WJTV – Lawmakers demand reform monitoring welfare funds in wake of embezzlement

WLBT – How TANF dollars are allowed to funnel into non-profits

How TANF dollars are allowed to funnel into non-profitsThere is a framework that allows legal transfer of those federal TANF dollars from the Department of Human Services to non-profits like the Mississippi Community Education Center.

“In 1996 the welfare reform act was passed and what that act did was it create this mechanism for block grants to happen. So, what that meant was, the federal government would send the money down to the states and the states could decide how to spend that money.”

In this case, the non-profits are considered sub-grantees. And according to the DHS manual, those subgrantees should be following guidelines and policies. But…



“That’s where there’s no accountability and loopholes can be created and that’s exactly what has happened.”

WJTV – State Auditor to visit FBI regarding embezzlement scheme

WLOX – MS Senate passes teacher pay raise

MS Senate passes teacher pay raiseThe Senate passed a measure this week to raise teacher pay by $1,000 per year, bringing the starting pay for a teacher in Mississippi’s public schools up to $37,000. There was such bi-partisan support that all senators asked to that their names be added to the bill as co-authors. Here to share his insight, State Senator Brice Wiggins.



Watch the full interview here.

USA FOOTBALL – State Rep. Trey Lamar – Confidence from Football Leads to Confidence in Life

From an early age, John Thomas Lamar III (everyone calls him “Trey”) had goals for himself. The current House District 8 Representative for the state of Mississippi knew he wanted to play football at a high level, knew he would probably follow in the footsteps of his family and practice law. He also knew that he would one day want to give back to his community.

“Football taught me so many lessons growing up that it’s hard to pinpoint one thing,” Lamar said. “I’ve always been the kind of guy that has loved having the ball in my hands and I love the competition of football. I just love the game.”…

…“I come from a long line of lawyers,” Lamar said. “My mother is a judge and my father is my law partner in our firm. My uncle was a lawyer and my grandfather founded our law firm back in the 1950s. I felt I could help our community in that way. Naturally in that capacity, I have always kept up with what’s going on in our community. I offered myself up for a leadership position in our community when it became available and I feel I have been able to get some good and positive things done for our residents and the state of Mississippi.”



While football has only been part of Lamar’s lifelong journey, he still has been able to look back and apply the lessons from the game to all of his current professional endeavors, both in the courtroom and in the state capitol. Without being too trite, he is confident that having football in his background has made him a better lawyer and a better public servant.

WLOX – 4th District Congressional candidate Carl Boyanton

4th District Congressional candidate Carl BoyantonThere are four republicans in the 4th District Congressional primary race, including incumbent Steven Palazzo. All the candidates have been invited to appear on WLOX News This Week. We begin our conversations with the candidates with Carl Boyanton.

Watch the full interview here.

NEWSMS – $56 million from USDA to help farmers improve water quality

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will invest $56 million this year to help agricultural producers improve water quality in more than 300 high-priority watersheds across the country.

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is continuing two of its successful landscape-level water quality efforts, the Mississippi River Basin Healthy Watersheds Initiative (MRBI) and National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI).

“We’ve learned that when we partner with producers to deliver conservation practices to critical watersheds, we see a positive impact,” said NRCS Chief Matthew Lohr, who made the announcement at the Hypoxia Task Force meeting today. “Through these partnerships we maximize the delivery of our conservation efforts which yields greater results to water quality and benefits the public, our natural resources and farmers’ bottom lines.”

WDAM – Collins aldermen approve installation of Project NOLA cameras

Collins aldermen approve installation of Project NOLA camerasThe city of Collins will soon be installing surveillance cameras through the nonprofit organization Project NOLA.

Aldermen voted unanimously this week to place six cameras in high-crime areas to deter or help solve crimes.

The cameras will be monitored 24 hours a day and they can detect sounds, like gunshots.

They’ll cost the city around $2,500 and the city will pay $60 each month for monitoring fees.