Stay up-to-date on what’s in the news with the Y’all Politics Daily Roundup.
YP – Shhh…Don’t highlight Medicaid fraud. It makes Medicaid Expansion efforts tougher, advocates say.
In a Clarion Ledger article, MCJ advocacy director Beth Orlansky said that “highlighting the alleged fraud will only serve to feed the calls for even stricter Medicaid regulations and curtail efforts to expand the program in Mississippi.”
Orlansky went on to tell the Clarion Ledger that the audit “feeds the messaging that people are taking advantage of the system, and so if you expand the system more people will take advantage of it.”
Executive Director of the ACLU of Mississippi, Jarvis Dortch, a former Democratic state representative, also spoke to the Clarion Ledger. He agreed with Orlansky, asking, “What are you going to do next year when there’s always some sort of effort in the Mississippi Legislature to make it harder for folks to get public benefits?”
MSDH COVID-19 Reporting
Today MSDH is reporting 2,821 more cases of COVID-19 in Mississippi, 7 deaths, and 134 ongoing outbreaks in long-term care facilities. State #covid19 totals: 352,891 cases, 7,597 deaths, and 1,038,185 persons fully vaccinated. Full information: https://t.co/YCv9xPyJDk pic.twitter.com/Ws8bXprYiD
— MS Dept of Health (@msdh) August 4, 2021
WJTV – ‘I should have gotten the vaccine’: Vicksburg Mayor Flaggs admits mistake after contracting COVID-19
Vicksburg Mayor George Flaggs has done public service announcements on television and in his hometown newspaper urging his constituents to get the COVID-19 vaccination.
Unfortunately, Flaggs said, he did not heed his own advice. Now Flaggs, who said he is doing well recovering from the coronavirus, is redoubling his efforts to encourage people to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
But the Governor said there will be no lockdowns in Mississippi.
“Mississippi is not going to participate in any lockdown, trying to be imposed on us by the Biden administration, our people are ready to be back working, our unemployment numbers peaked at 232,000 last year, we’re down below 20,000 today, our people are back working, our economy is rolling and that’s exactly what’s best for our state,” Gov. Reeves said.
The governor also said he would not issue any order prohibiting school districts from mandating masks for students because there are only a handful of districts issuing widespread mask mandates.
State Rep. Lee Yancey joined Y’all Politics on Tuesday to discuss possible reforms to Certificate of Need (CON) laws by the Mississippi Legislature in the 2022 session. The existing structure limits competition in the marketplace, yet enjoys backing routinely from hospitals and other industry lobbyists.
Rep. Yancey says enhancing the level of competition in the health care industry isn’t a bad thing, and points to other states who are tackling the issue in an effort to provide more affordable health care options in communities large and small.
Governor Reeves send condolences to family of Hinds Co. Sheriff Vance
MS lost a true law enforcement hero today who spent 30+ years keeping Hinds Co. residents safe. Over many of those years, Lee Vance was a personal friend to me & so many others in this community.@firstladyofms & I send our deepest condolences to the Vance family & @CountyHinds.
— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) August 4, 2021
More than 75 amicus briefs have been filed at the U.S. Supreme Court supporting Mississippi’s ban on most elective abortions after 15 weeks.
Before this fall, the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization will be argued before the court. Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch’s office said hundreds of experts filed 76 amicus briefs.
“As evident by the compelling briefs filed here by legal experts, medical providers, and lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, there are countless reasons why the Court should return the abortion discussion to the legislative branch,” said Attorney General Fitch.
Sen. Hyde-Smith serves on the Senate Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee that developed the FY2022 Energy and Water Development (EWD) Appropriations Bill. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the bill 25-5.
This measure includes funding to support flood control and water infrastructure projects in Mississippi. Senator Hyde-Smith has made the long-delayed flood control project a priority since arriving in the Senate in 2018.
“The decades of neglect to the Yazoo Backwater Area Project have cost Mississippians far too much. More recent severe storms and flooding highlight the immense amount of work that needs to be done,” said Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith.
The projects that will receive additional funding included the Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center in Hattiesburg and the 172 Airlift Wing at the Jackson International Airport.
The committee approved the funding as part of the FY2022 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs (MilCon-VA) Appropriations Bill. The bill passed committee by 25-5 and will now head to the full senate.
“The Senate MilCon-VA bill would fund several Mississippi projects that have been on the drawing board for a while, all of which are designed to improve the operational efficiency of the military units working and training in our state,” Hyde-Smith said. “I am pleased to help advance the projects for Camp Shelby and the 172nd Airlift Wing, and to move this measure forward to benefit all service members, their families, and veterans.”
The Mississippi Insurance Department says all college students should consider some type of insurance coverage while they are at school. Depending on their situation, a student may need auto, renters, life and health insurance policies.
For example, MID says students living off-campus should consider getting renters insurance. Individuals with one or more roommate should also know that each leaseholder needs their own individual renter’s policy.
If your student is leaving their vehicle at home, you may qualify for a discount on their auto insurance if your child is not taking a car and will be 100 miles or more away from home.
A special election for a proposed tax referendum is taking place Thursday in the city of Petal.
Petal’s voting machines underwent testing to prepare for Thursday’s election. If passed, the referendum will allow up to an additional three percent tax increase in restaurants, bars and hotels.
Petal Mayor Tony Ducker says if passed, the money will go to help with tourism and recreational opportunities and much more in the city.
“I promise that if it’s passed, I’ll treat these dollars just like I do every dollar that comes into the city,” said Ducker. “We will take a business-like approach and try to stretch those dollars for the benefit of our community.”
The Meridian Rotary Club held it’s weekly meeting Wednesday at Northwood Country Club and they heard from Brent Bailey, Public Service Commissioner of Mississippi’s Central District Office.
Bailey touched on a number of topics, including Mississippi’s no call list, last winter’s ice storms and the latest on the state’s increasing broadband access. Through the first round of a federal grant, the FCC has dispersed about $500 million into Mississippi, second only to California.
Bailey says that’s because the state has a true need for broadband because of all the rural areas and it’s lack of connectivity.