Mississippi House of Representatives Weekly Summer for Week of March 13, 2017
The deadline to consider revenue and appropriations bills that originated in the Senate occurred this
week. Among other things, these bills detail how much money will be appropriated to a number of
different state boards and departments. These include the Department of Revenue, the Department of
Public Safety and the Institution of Higher Learning (IHL).
While most appropriations bills were passed in a block, a few were pulled out for individual discussion.
The Gaming Commission appropriation bill, Senate Bill 2986, was given individual attention when an
amendment was offered to create a lottery in the state of Mississippi. Ultimately, the amendment
failed, marking the last opportunity to establish a state lottery this year.
Appropriations for the IHL, Senate Bill 2954 and Senate Bill 2955, also garnered discussion when
amendments were introduced that would require state schools to prominently display the Mississippi
flag to receive state money. Both attempts to adopt the amendment failed, as did a similar piece of
legislation from last week, which died on the calendar.
Most of these appropriations and revenue bills will be discussed at conference, a period during which
representatives and senators will work together to finalize numbers in each bill.
As the 2017 legislative session winds down, several bills are being “concurred” upon and sent to the
governor to be signed into law. Among these is the Health Care Collaboration Act, which will allow the
University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) to enter into a health care collaborative with other
health care entities throughout the state. House members also sent the Back the Badge Act to the
governor, which will double penalties for any crime committed against law enforcement officers,
firefighters and emergency medical technicians.
On Wednesday, the House presented House Resolution 10 to leaders of Camp Shelby to commemorate
the training facility’s 100 th anniversary. Members also presented House Concurrent Resolution 25 to Jake
and Shirley Sanford, founders of Veterans OutReach, a charity that focuses on bettering the lives of
Mississippi veterans home residents.
Among visitors to the Capitol this week were members of the Mississippi Library Commission, the
Mississippi Department of Mental Health, the Children’s Center for Communication and Development,
the Children’s Defense Fund and Mississippi Public Broadcasting.