“Today, I signed what I expect will be one of my last executive orders regarding COVID-19. Our hospitalizations have plummeted, and our case numbers have fallen dramatically as well. In fact, our case numbers have fallen to the point where no county meets the original criteria for a mask mandate,” said Governor Tate Reeves.
“I am replacing our current orders with recommendations. Everyone should continue to listen to Dr. Dobbs and other health advisors for the best possible wisdom regarding how you can personally stem any risk of catching COVID. Their insight is valuable. The only rules that will remain in this order are a capacity limit of 50% on indoor arenas, and those that govern K-12 schools.”
MSDH daily COVID-19 reporting
Today MSDH is reporting 301 more cases of COVID-19 in Mississippi, 44 deaths, and 64 ongoing outbreaks in long-term care facilities. The total of #covid19 cases for the year is now 295,295, with 6,724 deaths. Case details and prevention guidance at https://t.co/YCv9xPyJDk pic.twitter.com/H3JnsdmTJA
— MS Dept of Health (@msdh) March 2, 2021
This year, both the Mississippi House and Senate authored versions of a teacher pay raise, with fundamentally the same components. Members appropriated $1,000 for teachers and assistant teachers across the board, with $100 more for assistant teachers.
The bill would bring base pay for teachers to $37,000, which is just shy of the Southeastern average at $38,420 and cost the state about $51 million.
After a long day of uncertainty surrounding the passage of either bill, the House version was eventually taken up in the referred Senate committees.
Speaker of the House Philip Gunn sat down with Y’all Politics to talk about the particulars of HB 1439, the Tax Freedom Act. Gunn says now is the time to pass an elimination of the income tax, that the state cannot afford to wait.
“The time is now. Our citizens need tax relief now,” said Gunn. “This needs to happen this year, today, people need tax relief.”
NFIB State Director Dawn Starns McVea joined Y’all Politics for a discussion on how the business community is responding to the proposed state income tax phase out bill passed by the Mississippi House in HB 1439.
McVea said while the business community was initially excited about the release of the legislation, concerns have risen with the increase in sales tax, as well as other tax on things like farm and manufacturing equipment. She said the devil is in the details and is hopeful that the Mississippi Senate can tweak the legislation, or set it aside for more study to ensure businesses are not adversely effected by the income tax phase out legislation given the increases in other areas of taxation.
The notary, Jones, testified that she was called to the home of Democrat Alderwoman Lady Garth to correct her father’s absentee ballot paperwork, saying she notarized “about 30 something ballots.”
Lady Garth, acting mayor, was in the news recently after the State Auditor’s Office issued a demand of $30,000 saying that the vote by Garth, Holliday, and Ward 3 Alderman Edward Haynes Jr. to reinstate the salary of now ex-mayor Maurice Howard in 2020 was an illegal donation of public funds.
The judge also found other election irregularities. Judge Weill noted that 83 regular ballots were counted without being initialed by election workers.
YP – Harper provides an update on the House Ethics Committee inquiry into Palazzo’s campaign spending
Monday night, the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) released a report in the inquiry regarding Mississippi 4th District Congressman Steven Palazzo’s use of campaign funds.
While the report casts a negative light on Palazzo’s campaign expenditures, it is only a referral for additional review and not a final disciplinary action. The matter now is up for review and consideration by the House Ethics Committee.
YP – Leisure Pools launching manufacturing and distribution operations in Picayune, creating 100 jobs
Leisure Pools, one of the world’s largest composite fiberglass swimming pool, spa and tanning ledge manufacturers, has finalized plans to establish manufacturing and distribution operations in Picayune. The project is a $3.25 million corporate investment and will create 100 jobs.
“Mississippi is a top state for companies with extensive manufacturing needs, like Leisure Pools, and our strong manufacturing workforce is always up to any task – no matter how large or small. I know Leisure Pools’ new employees will work hard to continue the company’s legacy of producing only the best fiberglass pools for its consumers,” Gov. Tate Reeves said.
YP – PSC issues $280k no-call fine
Mississippi PSC issues $280,000 no-call fine against telemarketerhttps://t.co/kgCy6Q3u39
— Yall Politics (@MSyallpolitics) March 2, 2021
Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney and Senator Walter Michel have joined with the University of Mississippi to offer a scholarship annually for two seniors in the School of Business Administrations RMI program.
The J. Walter Michel and Michael J. Chaney Risk Management and Insurance Scholarship of Excellence fund will provide a $2,500 scholarship each year to two college seniors in the program. The combined effort brought the $50,000 gift from the two to the University to award the scholarship to a minimum of 20 individuals over the next 10 years. Efforts are being made to continue the scholarship after that point.
Congressman Guest talks border security on Newsmax
— Congressman Michael Guest (@RepMichaelGuest) March 2, 2021
“It’s a really common misperception of individuals with communication disorders, and I really think that’s something that this type of legislation can help combat,” Turner said.
She’s talking about Senate Bill 2764.
The bill created car decals for people with communication disorders to put on their vehicle to give law enforcement a heads up to their situation. She says these could help prevent potentially dangerous misunderstandings.