State education officials making their legally-mandated push to support Mississippi's school funding formula were questioned Tuesday in a budget hearing about rising spending on administrators and whether lawmakers should spend more money on programs not included in the formula. The Legislature would have to add an estimated $311.7 million to the Mississippi Adequate Education Program … Continue reading Mississippi lawmakers question whether local school districts spending money wisely
BY: B. Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett It is said that truth is stranger than fiction. It’s oftentimes a little less flattering, too. Such is the case with the Medicaid Special Session held last week at the State Capitol.Unity is the word of the week from Republicans--ALMOST all Republicans--but the truth is the session wasn’t all smiles, … Continue reading PLUNKETT: Medicaid Session truth is not pretty, but the deal got done.
On the opening day of the special session Thursday, the House voted to both reauthorize and to fund the health care program, something it could not do in the regular session. But both bills were held on parliamentary maneuvers meaning they cannot be taken up by the Senate before Friday. With the votes on funding … Continue reading Lt. Gov. Reeves hints at support of one-year repealer, and more expansion debate in 2014.
If you don’t think Reeves is purposefully trying to distinguish his position from that of Bryant and Gunn while still maintaining his current opposition to Medicaid expansion, then explain why he included this next part: “Earlier this year, the Senate reauthorized and funded Medicaid without expansion in a bipartisan vote. Unfortunately, the bill died in … Continue reading HALL: Will Lt. Governor play inter-party politics with Medicaid special session?
BY: B. Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett A group of eleven state senators announced on Tuesday the formation of the Mississippi Senate Conservative Coalition (MSCC). The group will assist conservatives in parsing through the details of approximately 3,000 bills filed each year at the state capitol with the hope of getting good conservative legislation in the spotlight … Continue reading PLUNKETT: Political response to Senate Conservative Coalition proves why it is needed.
Mississippi's Prepaid College Tuition program is at a stand-still. It's supposed to allow parents to lock in college tuition rates early and not have to pay for any tuition hikes later. But there's been a growing crack in the piggy bank. A recent audit of the program raised multiple financial concerns and put the board … Continue reading Treasurer Fitch and MPACT Board working to revamp troubled program.
The Grammy Museum Mississippi will showcase the state's role in developing blues, country and genres that shaped American music. Officials are breaking ground Tuesday for the museum. It will be at the south end of the Delta State University golf course, off of Mississippi Highway 8 in Cleveland. The museum is scheduled to open in … Continue reading Governor and Lt. Governor to join in breaking ground for Grammy Museum.
Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves has gotten off easy thus far during the current Medicaid controversy. Over in the House, Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, used extraordinary parliamentary maneuvers to ensure that the lower chamber did not have an opportunity to vote on expanding Medicaid to cover those earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty … Continue reading HARRISON: Lt. Gov. Reeves may be on Medicaid hot seat.
I've heard Republican power brokers are already working on a fairly complicated contingency plan involving multiple appointments that could end with a South Mississippian in the lieutenant governor's office if Cochran steps down before his term ends. Gov. Phil Bryant would appoint Cochran's replacement until an election could be held. Bryant could choose Lt. Gov. … Continue reading NEWSOM: Cochran scenario to produce Coast lieutenant governor?
UPDATE: Listen to this interview with Treasurer Lynn Fitch for more information about the MPACT Audit and the future of the program. The final phase of the audit of the MPACT program is released today by Treasurer Lynn Fitch after presentation to the MPACT Board. Here is a first look: Below are links that show … Continue reading First Look: Final phase of the MPACT Actuarial Audit