Geoff Pender: If state doesn’t fix foster care, feds will

Bryant announced last week that state Supreme Court Justice David Chandler is leaving the court to take over the state’s foster care system. Per U.S. District Judge Tom Lee’s orders, Chandler and DFCS will report directly to Bryant instead of the Department of Human Services director.

Bryant said he also will ask the Legislature in January for a $37 million-a-year increase in DFCS spending.

This will be a tough sell in a tight budget year with many other competing needs — such as public education and highways spending — and GOP leaders’ vows to cut taxes.

But this is a can that has been kicked down the political road far too long, threatening the lives and well-being of thousands of children. If Mississippi doesn’t fix its system, the feds will and that most assuredly wouldn’t be pleasant for lawmakers or taxpayers.