Home Daily Roundup YP Daily Roundup 6/2/21

YP Daily Roundup 6/2/21

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

YP – MEVi 78 supporters file challenges to MS Supreme Court decision on Initiative 65

MEVi 78 submitted a proposed initiative on April 1, 2021 which would allow Mississippians no fewer than 10 days of early voting before any election. They were not the only potential new initiative to be on the ballot. However, due to the MS Supreme Courts ruling on Initiative 65 and the initiative process, it is unclear whether future initiatives will be accepted until a change to the Constitution is made.

In a press statement MEVi 78 claimed that this is the second time this particular Court has ruled to nullify a constitutional ballot initiative process in 99 years. The filings are requesting a rehearing by the Court. They were required to cite errors of law in their motions as well as any facts that had not been addressed by the Court.

“When I cited Legislative Inaction as my reason for filing a ballot initiative for 10 days of early voting, I never imagined that the MS Supreme Court would again nullify the Constitution it is supposed to protect. That’s unconstitutional,” said House 40 Representative Hester Jackson-McCray.

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YP – PEER releases report on Mississippi school district revenue sources and expenditures

Mississippi’s public school districts operate as separate financial entities. The funds they receive come from state appropriations, local revenue, federal revenue and other sources like grants and donations. In this report PEER focused on reoccurring revenue from state, local and federal sources.

District expenditures were divided into seven major budget categories: instructional, administration, student support, plant operations, food services, transportation and other.

  • A comparison of the level of funding for Mississippi and contiguous states determined that Alabama has the highest level of state funding (56%) and the lowest level of local funding (33%), while Louisiana has the lowest level of state funding (45%) and the highest level of local funding (45%).  Mississippi’s level of state funding was 50% and local funding was 36%.

YP – Former Newspaper Publisher, Public Schools Advocate Named to State Board of Education by Lt. Governor Delbert Hosemann

William (“Bill”) O. Jacobs of Brookhaven, appointee of Lieutenant Governor Delbert Hosemann, will serve a three-year term ending in July 2024, pending confirmation by the Mississippi Senate. Jacobs replaces former Board Chairman Jason Dean, who stepped down in February 2021.

The Mississippi State Board of Education includes nine members from across the State, with two appointed at-large by the Lieutenant Governor.  The Board oversees the State Department of Education, working with the State Superintendent of Education to establish statewide education policy ranging from curriculum to accountability.  Mississippi currently has about 450,000 public school students.

YP – Secretary Watson Joins National #BizSchemeSOS Public Education Effort

Secretary Michael Watson joins his National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) colleagues in the newly launched #BizSchemeSOS education effort. The initiative encourages the public, business owners and future entrepreneurs to keep the Secretary of State’s Office as the primary, trusted contact for all business-related needs to avoid business schemes and other fraudulent practices or activities. Also, by checking with the Secretary of State’s Office, individuals can find helpful, accurate and up-to-date information on business services laws, filings, requirements and more.

One of the most popular business schemes in Mississippi involves misleading solicitation mailings. These mailings often appear to be official government documents, instructing businesses to submit payment to them for assistance in meeting state filing requirements.

YP – Tupelo PD, DA and PSC: Virginia Man Charged in Connection with Elderly Scam

A Virginia man whom state officials and local law enforcement believe played a key role in defrauding an elderly Tupelo resident out of nearly $19,000 through a scam that started with an illegal telemarketing-style call.  Yao Lin of Ruther Glen, Virginia has been arrested charged with three counts of False Pretense and two counts of Mail Fraud.

Investigators from the Tupelo Police Department and the Office of Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley, working with District Attorney John Weddle, were investigating a scam complaint filed by an elderly Tupelo resident when they discovered evidence that included video surveillance of the suspect in the commencement of the crime. The investigation began in March.

YP – AG Lynn Fitch Continues to Fight Human Trafficking in Mississippi

The Mississippi Attorney General’s Office successfully executed three undercover human trafficking operations over the last two weeks. The operations resulted in the location and rescue of twenty human trafficking victims and at least six arrests, and with investigations still ongoing, the operation may result in additional arrests.

“Human trafficking is a destructive crime that debases our common humanity and diminishes the value of human life. These victims are someone’s daughter, sister, or friend, and I am determined to put an end to this criminal enterprise and help them find their way forward without shame or blame,” said Attorney General Lynn Fitch. “I would like to thank the law enforcement officers, investigators, and all of our federal, state, and local partners who assisted in these operations for their hard work and continued support in the fight to end human trafficking in Mississippi.”

YP – Wicker, Hyde-Smith, & Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Sanction Enablers of Palestinian Terrorist Groups

U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., have joined their colleagues in reintroducing the Palestinian International Terrorism Support Prevention Act.

The bill (S.1904) would impose sanctions against foreign individuals, entities, and governments that provide support to Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and other Palestinian terrorist groups that have launched more than 4,000 rockets at Israeli civilians over the last few weeks. The legislation would also require the President to submit to Congress an assessment of whether critical foreign countries are doing enough to counter the fundraising, financing, and money laundering activities of Palestinian terrorist groups.

WCBI – MS State Auditor spoke with Rotary about punishments for embezzlement

Shad White spoke to the Columbus Rotary today.

He believes there needs to be tougher penalties for elected leaders and employees who steal from the people they serve.

White’s office has investigated embezzlement cases in several cities and counties in the area including Oktibbeha County, Pontotoc County, and the city of Columbus.

WDAM – Funeral arrangements for former Laurel mayor updated

Melvin Mack became Laurel's first Black mayor when he was elected in 2005.

Funeral arrangements for former Laurel mayor Melvin Mack have been altered slightly

Mack, who became Laurel’s first Black mayor on his election in 2005, passed away on May 28 at age 72.

A public viewing is set for Friday in the rotunda of City Hall from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Funeral services are set for Saturday in the auditorium of Laurel High School at 2 p.m.