Governor Tate Reeves delivered the 2021 State of the State address on Tuesday, January 26.
Watch the full speech here.
Senator Derrick Simmons offered the Democratic response to Governor Tate Reeves’ State of the State address. This is a customary action made by the opposite party of the Governor’s affiliation…
…”In the words of Mississippi’s “Education Governor” William Winter, “the road out of the poor house, runs past the school house.” We lost Governor Winter late last year but we remain committed to his work. Governor, Mississippi has still not completed construction of the road out of the poor house but Mississippi Democrats have their hard hats on and we’re going to keep following your road map.
“If we are going to be a state worthy of our young people, we must also figure out a way to provide health coverage for our citizens. While the modern world has embraced healthcare innovations, Mississippi remains at the bottom in both health insurance coverage and health outcomes. The shortsighted politics of Mississippi Republicans have cost Mississippi billions of dollars and left our hospitals hanging on by a thread. If Governor Reeves will not expand Medicaid, it is past time for him and Republican leaders to come up with an alternative. Identity politics do not pay the hospital bills.
“As we inch toward a more hopeful future, we must continue to look out for each other. This means being honest about our successes and our failures. Our politics have become corrosive. This is primarily the cause of politicians who would rather tell you what you want to hear than deal with harsh realities. As legislative Democrats we are recommitting ourselves to the truth…”
MSDH Daily COVID-19 Reporting
Today MSDH is reporting 1,452 more cases of COVID-19 in Mississippi, 75 deaths, and 195 ongoing outbreaks in long-term care facilities. The total of #covid19 cases for the year is now 266,598, with 5,852 deaths. Case details and prevention guidance at https://t.co/YCv9xPyJDk pic.twitter.com/M0csdPh787
— MS Dept of Health (@msdh) January 26, 2021
In this Bill of the Day authored by Senator Sparks, entitled the “Empowering Reentry through Licensing Act,” SB 2561 it would give a six-month provisional license to eligible individuals who have served time.
The licenses would be issued through the Department of Public Safety with the intention of helping those who have been recently released from prison obtain employment and be able to travel to and from that job without worry of being pulled over and put back in prison.
Gov. Tate Reeves has issued a proclamation designating January 24-30, 2021 as School Choice Week in the state of Mississippi. At the same time, Sens. Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith cosponsored a U.S. Senate resolution declaring this as National School Choice Week.
“I thank Gov. Tate Reeves for his proclamation declaring this National School Choice Week in Mississippi and Sens. Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith for cosponsoring the U.S. Senate resolution designating this National School Choice Week,” said Grant Callen, CEO of Empower Mississippi. “This is a special week that recognizes the need for effective education options for every child, something that is especially needed now because of COVID-19 and the changing classroom. We appreciate the steps Mississippi has taken in providing high quality educational options, but we know much work remains.”
Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson signed a Memorandum of Understanding with USDA APHIS Wildlife Services (WS) to strengthen the cooperative relationship between WS and the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce (MDAC). The Memorandum of Understanding enhances the ability for MDAC and WS to work together to monitor and control threats to human health and agricultural crops such as diseases spread by wild hogs and bird depredation on aquaculture.
During the 2020 Legislative Session, legislation was passed that authorizes the Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce to provide technical guidance and outreach to landowners, farmers and producers for the management of nuisance wildlife on private agricultural and forestry lands, and to partner with state and federal agencies regarding nuisance wildlife management and to promote awareness across the state.
Wicker, Hyde-Smith vote to halt Trump impeachment
Today I voted to halt the impeachment trial of President Trump.
The effort to remove a President who is no longer in office raises serious constitutional questions.https://t.co/owYLmaMWqF
— Senator Roger Wicker (@SenatorWicker) January 26, 2021
YP – Hyde-Smith: CPB issues $21.2 million contract for border security helicopters build in Mississippi
U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), a member of the Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, today reported that the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has issued a $21.2 million contract to begin production of Mississippi-built Light Enforcement Helicopters (LEH).
The CBP contract, which has a $65.9 million potential value, is for the delivery of up to nine LEHs. The aircraft are manufactured at the Airbus plant in Columbus…
…The contract is funded through FY2020 appropriations and represents Hyde-Smith’s continued work to secure funding for new aircraft to strengthen the CBP helicopter fleet, which has been diminished by aging airframes and accidents.
Palazzo, Guest, Kelly agree: House Republicans oppose bills to fund abortions
— Cong. Steven Palazzo (@CongPalazzo) January 26, 2021
Lawmakers are considering a new bill that would keep employers from requiring you to take the COVID-19 vaccine.
The bill, introduced by Rep. Dan Eubanks (R) and Rep. Dana Criswell (R) gives each individual the freedom to decide if the vaccine is right for them…
…Eubanks said it’s an attack on our collective liberty, under the guise of safety, “and it comes under the form of vaccines or mandates,” he said.
Both Eubanks and Criswell have been extremely vocal about healthcare freedoms.
The ACLU of Mississippi says that Senate Bill 2588 is a voter-suppression tool, and would “force election commissioners to remove voters from the voter rolls for simply not voting.”
On Tuesday, the bill was passed out of the Senate Elections Committee, meaning it could be brought up for a vote by the entire Senate.
The measure would create a new code section to require county registrars or election commissioners to “remove from the statewide elections management system” voters who fail to respond to a voter confirmation notice, vote, or update their registration information at least once in a four-year period.
A confirmation notice is a notice sent by election commissioners to a “registered elector to confirm the registered elector’s address,” the bill states. The election commission shall be required to send a notice to each voter that has failed to vote at least once in elections in the previous two years.
Shortly after the address, we reached out to Senator Jeff Tate who says despite all the challenges in 2020, the state of Mississippi continues to develop.
Tate says he agrees with Governor Reeves — that eliminating the state income tax will only attract more businesses. Tate says he is more than willing to help the state get to zero income tax.
“I’m one hundred percent for removing our income tax in the state of Mississippi.” Tate said, “I believe that that will be a job creator. I believe the more money that the individual can have in their pocket, the more that they will invest.”
Governor Reeves says he will sign any legislation that will support a teacher pay raise. Tate says he is supports the governor in giving teachers what they deserve.
A New Albany legislator wants to criminalize flag burning in defiance of several U.S. Supreme Court rulings.
Sen. Kathy Chism, R-New Albany, has introduced a bill that would ban any burning of the U.S. flag other than for the disposal of a worn or soiled flag.
In a statement to the Daily Journal, Chism said she hopes the bill will ultimately lead the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn standing precedent that laws against flag burning are unconstitutional.