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

YP – Mississippi Recognized by Area Development Magazine for Economic Development Excellence

The state of Mississippi has been recognized by Area Development magazine with a Silver Shovel Award. The award is a tribute to Mississippi’s economic development successes in 2020, and it signifies the state’s unwavering efforts to generate new jobs and investment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Area Development is a widely respected publication, and for Mississippi to be honored with a Shovel Award by the Area Development team is a remarkable achievement – especially to be honored for our hard work during 2020,” Gov. Tate Reeves said. “My administration and economic developers throughout the state never once stopped working for the people during the pandemic, and this award will serve as a constant reminder that Mississippi plays to win, even in the most challenging of economic times.”

The Shovel Awards are presented to state economic development agencies that create a significant number of jobs through innovative policies, infrastructure improvements, processes and promotions that attract new employers and investments in new and expanded facilities.

YP – MDHS Recovers More Than $2.5 Million in Misallocated Funds

The Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) Benefit Recovery Unit reported more than $2.5 million in taxpayer dollars was recouped over the past quarter after previous investigations showed public funds were defrauded or misused.

The funds were recovered from cases involving misuse of SNAP, Child Care Discretionary Funding, and TANF subgrant funds…

…The amount has increased due to the fact that the MDHS monitoring division is now able to provide appropriate oversight of subgrantees. They also haven’t included child care in the past but now are, MDHS says.

MSDH Daily COVID-19 Reporting

YP – Federal judge blocks Biden’s moratorium on Oil & Gas leases. What’s that mean for Mississippi?

Last week, U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty blocked the Biden administration’s suspension of new oil and gas leases on federal land and water. The Louisiana federal judge’s ruling granted a preliminary injunction, halting the suspension on oil and gas leases pending further arguments on the merits of the case. This means planned leases can move forward in the meantime…

…Jimmy Heidelberg, Vice Chairman of Mississippi Oil and Gas Board, joined Y’all Politics on Wednesday to discuss what this means and why Mississippi should be paying attention to this development.

YP – Wicker, Hyde-Smith join Republican colleagues in blocking Democrats’ elections takeover

On Tuesday, U.S. Senate Republicans blocked debate on the Democrats’ “For the People Act” (S. 1) that sought to implement federal election standards on states, many argued that would undermine Voter ID and election integrity laws across the nation.

Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith joined the other 48 Republican Senators in voting not to proceed to debate on the legislation, effectively filibustering and preventing Democrats from reaching the 60 vote threshold needed to move the bill forward in the chamber. All 50 Democrats voted in favor of the act.

Mississippi’s senior Senator called the S. 1 “a truly radical piece of legislation.”

YP – Mississippi leads nation in personal income increases buoyed by federal COVID relief checks

Across the nation, state personal income increased 59.7 percent at an annual rate in the first quarter of 2021 after decreasing 3.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020, according to estimates released Tuesday by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

The percent change in personal income ranged from 89.3 percent in Mississippi to 31.1 percent in the District of Columbia.

Mississippi saw the biggest increase.

The reason for the increases are primarily due to the federal government’s COVID relief checks passed earlier this year by Congress that topped $2 trillion. Individuals received $600 under the Trump Administration, and then saw another $1,400 at the start of the Biden Administration.

Congressman Thompson questions lack of “diversity” in U.S. Coast Guard

YP – Wicker disappointed in Biden Administration’s “so-called” 30-year shipbuilding plan

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, questioned General David Berger, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, on the posture of the U.S. Navy in review of the Defense Authorization Request for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) and the Future Years Defense Program.

During the hearing, Wicker expressed his disappointment in the Pentagon’s “so-called” 30-year shipbuilding plan released last Friday. He referenced discrepancies between the plan and Lieutenant General Eric Smith’s testimony last week in the House Seapower Subcommittee, which cited a joint Navy-Marine Corps study that called for 31 traditional amphibious ships, including 21 LSD-LPDs. This differs substantially from the recently announced plan, which calls for a range of only 16-19 LPDs.

YP – Congressman Palazzo joins new Conservative Climate Caucus

South Mississippi Congressman Steven Palazzo (R-MS04) announced Wednesday that he has joined the newly formed Conservative Climate Caucus.

In a release, new Caucus chair Congressman John Curtis (R-UT) said the goal of the Conservative Climate Caucus is to bring members of the Republican party together to educate each other on climate policies that will make real progress on reducing emissions through American innovation and resources.

“Proposals to reduce emissions and be good stewards of the earth do not have to hurt the American economy – in fact they do the opposite,” Curtis said.

WJTV – Mississippi state auditor discusses misuse of unemployment payments