Stay up-to-date on what’s in the news with the Y’all Politics Daily Roundup.

YP – PSC Commissioner Presley talks broadband, initiative process with Y’all Politics

In an interview with Y’all Politics on Wednesday, Northern District Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley provided an update on how funds appropriated from the state and federal government are being used to expand broadband in Mississippi. He went on to highlight the federal credit for certain customers that funds $50 per month through the Emergency Broadband Benefit program.

Presley also expressed his concern over the recent ruling from the Mississippi Supreme Court that struck down the state’s initiative process. The Commissioner believes a special session and a special statewide election should be called to change the language in the state constitution to restore the initiative process as it is currently structured. He has started a petition on his website to urge Governor Tate Reeves to call lawmakers back to the Capitol.

YP – Mississippi Land, Water and Timber Resources Board Announces Approval of $3.1 Million to Expand Meat Processing Capacity in the State

The Mississippi Land, Water and Timber Resources Board (LWTRB) approved $3.1 million in financial assistance to seven livestock processing facilities to increase their capacity following interruptions in the food supply chain due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board, co-chaired by Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson and Executive Director of the Mississippi Development Authority John Rounsaville, approved funding to expand currently operating USDA-inspected processing facilities and construct new USDA-inspected facilities.

YP – SBA List Launches Initial $2 Million TV Ad Campaign in Response to Landmark Abortion Case

Today the national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) announced the launch of an initial two-million-dollar television ad campaign asserting the humanity of unborn children. The ad buy is a response to news that the U.S. Supreme Court will review a Mississippi law limiting abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The 2018 legislation passed by overwhelming majorities in the state legislature and was signed by then-Governor Phil Bryant.

The :30 spot will air on national cable, including on Lifetime, Hallmark, and Bravo networks, as well as select streaming services, and in the Washington, DC media market on top news stations.

MSDH Daily COVID-19 Reporting

YP – Treasurer McRae Challenges John Kerry, Biden Admin on Fossil Fuel Industry Attacks

State Treasurer David McRae joined financial officers from 15 states on a letter condemning the Biden administration’s attempts to pressure banks and other large financial institutions into divesting from coal, oil, and natural gas companies. The letter comes in the wake of reports that Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry has privately pressured banks to cut off lending for fossil fuel industries.
“As a collective, we strongly oppose command-and-control economic policies that attempt to bend the free market to the political will of government officials,” the Treasurers wrote. “It is simply antithetical to our nation’s position as a democracy and a capitalist economy for the Executive Branch to bully corporations into curtailing legal activities.”

YP – Wicker Warns Against Biden Administration’s Defense Budget Cuts

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, on Tuesday pressed Ms. Susanna Blume, the nominee to be Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation for the Department of Defense, on the Biden Administration’s plan to cut the national defense budget.

Press reports have indicated that President Biden intends to announce on Friday a budget that would not adequately fund the Department of Defense and would cut back on key national security priorities, including shipbuilding.

YP – Wicker Votes to Advance Bipartisan Surface Transportation Bill

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., a member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, today voted to advance the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act of 2021, which would set a baseline funding level over five years at a historic high of $303.5 billion for highways, roads, and bridges across the nation. If enacted, it would provide an estimated $3.3 billion to Mississippi during this period. The proposal now heads to the Senate floor for consideration.

“It is good to see Congress come together in a bipartisan way for our nation’s infrastructure,” Wicker said. “This bill would provide a historic investment for the many roads, highways, and bridges across America that need repair or replacement. It also includes a number of important provisions that would help Mississippi communities access federal resources for important transportation projects and increase safety in our state. As Congress looks for solutions to our nation’s crumbling infrastructure, this is a step in the right direction.”

YP – Hyde-Smith Promotes Forest Service-USDA efforts to deliver COVID recovery help to timber harvesters, haulers

U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today encouraged continued interagency cooperation on the delivery of COVID-19 economic recovery resources appropriated by Congress last year for timber harvesting and hauling businesses.

Hyde-Smith discussed the recovery program with U.S. Forest Service Chief Vicki Christiansen at a Senate Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee hearing titled “Rethinking Resiliency:  Budgeting for the Future of Forest Management.”