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Daily Archives: February 8, 2011

Residents invited to help update multi-year transportation plan

Residents and organizations that want to help shape Central Mississippi transportation priorities will get an opportunity to present their suggestions at a series of transportation summits this month sponsored by the Metropolitan Planning Organization. The summits are part of a 5-year update of a plan designed as blueprint for the region’s transportation priorities through 2035, said Larry Smith, a planner ...

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House lawmakers approve insurance exchange plan

JACKSON — The Mississippi House has approved a plan that would allow employers to buy group health insurance policies anywhere in the country, not just from Mississippi insurers. The House, by an 83-33 margin yesterday, passed a bill to enact a health insurance exchange in Mississippi. Backers say the health insurance exchange is a critical part of the federal Patient ...

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Coast airport looking to increase passenger fee

GULFPORT — Officials with Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport are seeking local support for an increase in a passenger fee that they say now is too low to help payoff debt. The Sun Herald reports airport officials are pushing to increase the Passenger Facility Charge from $4.50 to $7 per passenger. The fee hasn’t been raised since 2000. Airport executive director Bruce ...

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Schools to share in tax revenue from LNG terminal

PASCAGOULA — Four Jackson County schools will share $395,468 in tax revenue from Gulf LNG Energy’s $1.1-billion liquefied natural gas terminal under construction in Bayou Casotte. County supervisors approved distribution of the funds Monday. A 2007 state law mandated that taxes generated by new expansions at LNG facilities and crude oil refineries be split among all four school districts in ...

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Ailing MDOT director voted out by Commission

JACKSON — The Mississippi Transportation Commission has asked agency director Larry “Butch” Brown for his resignation by Wednesday or he will be fired. The commission voted 2-1 today to remove Brown as executive director of the Department of Transportation. He was replaced by Melinda McGrath, MDOT’s chief engineer. Newly elected Northern District Commissioner Mike Taggert, who was sworn in before ...

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An 'enHanced' view of the environment

By Wally Northway In the late 1980s I was part of a group of students in the MBA program at William Carey University conducting a case study of a company that was planning a major expansion. The site selected for the expansion was a tract of wetlands. When I raised concerns about the potential negative environmental impact of the proposed ...

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Lauren Innovations becomes founding partner of NCS4

HATTIESBURG — NaviGate by Lauren Innovations, a web-based critical information system for safety and security purposes, has become a founding partner of the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi. NaviGate will now serve as the backbone of a new web portal NCS4 plans to unveil in Aug. 2011. In becoming a ...

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Ex-bookkeeper gets jail time for embezzlement

GULFPORT — A former bookkeeper will serve two years in prison for embezzling a little more than $135,000 from a Gulfport law firm. The Sun Herald reports that Circuit Judge Larry Bourgeois gave Heather Denise Parker the maximum penalty of 10 years Monday and suspended eight, leaving two to serve. He also ordered restitution. Prosecutors say once Parker serves her ...

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Housing agency director arrested for intimidating winesses

GREENVILLE — The director of an organization that claims to promote affordable housing in the Mississippi Delta has been charged with intimidating witnesses in a federal investigation. South Delta Regional Housing Authority director Ann Jefferson, 56, was arrested Monday on charges she retaliated against two employees and a woman who bought a house from the organization, Daniel McMullen, special agent ...

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Barbour lists problems with healthcare reform

JACKSON — Gov. Haley Barbour and 19 other Republican governors have submitted a list of potential healthcare law improvements for the administration to consider, if the law passed last year by the Democratic Congress isn’t repealed or struck down by the courts. “In addition to its constitutional infringements, we believe the system proposed by the (administration) is seriously flawed, favors ...

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