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Daily Archives: February 16, 2012

Highlights of proposed charter school bill

Senate Bill 2401, the “MISSISSIPPI PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOLS ACT 1 OF 2012″ introduced by Sen. Gray Tollison is now available to the public. Read the full bill here. See Feb. 13, 2012 MBJ story, “Advocates want more flexible charter school bill.” Interesting  and notable elements in the bill: Independent Authorizer Board created SB 2041 creates the Mississippi Public Charter School ...

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Some states to use foreclosure settlement money to patch budgets

Seeing a chance to plug budget holes in their states, three governors are laying claim to portions of a recent $25 billion mortgage foreclosure settlement to be paid by five of the nation’s largest banks. Where authority for use of the money rests is not entirely clear. Some media reports say U.S., Attorney General Eric Holder and the 49 attorneys ...

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Cochran, Hutchins want continuation of USDA programs in farm bill

WASHINGTON — In a Senate hearing on energy and economic growth for rural America, U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) urged continuation of economic development programs in the Department of Agriculture that will help provide jobs and improve the standard of living in rural America. Cochran serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee that heard testimony from a number of witnesses, including ...

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Norfolk Southern signs biodiesel agreement for rail yard

MERIDIAN — Dynamic Fuels, LLC and Mansfield Oil Company have signed an agreement to supply renewable diesel to Norfolk Southern Corporation, a transporter of coal and industrial products. Norfolk Southern has primarily been using a Dynamic Fuels renewable diesel at its Meridian rail yard since early January. Dynamic Fuels, a 50/50 venture owned by Tyson Foods Inc. and Syntroleum Corporation, ...

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BP oil spill funds to be used for new Coast nature center

MOSS POINT — A new $2 million Pascagoula River Audubon Center celebrating the environment of the Mississippi Gulf Coast is scheduled to open in early 2013. The center, one of just 43 such Audubon centers across the country, will be located within walking distance of downtown Moss Point. Audubon president David Yarnold says the center will be located on a ...

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City launches first-ever summer internship program

GREENVILLE — The city of Greenville has launched its first internship program, set to begin this summer. The Go Greenville Summer Internship Program will offer college juniors, who graduated from a high school in Greenville, to intern with a Greenville business for 10 weeks this summer. Mayor Chuck Jordan said, “Not only will college students learn real-world experience, but the ...

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MDOT project halted after contractor goes bankrupt

TUPELO — The bankruptcy of a general contractor has prompted the Mississippi Department of Transportation to halt work on a district office in Tupelo. The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports the new $5.1 million, 34,000-square-foot office was scheduled to be finished in August. The general contractor, DC&M in Bay St. Louis, filed for bankruptcy in mid-January and that halted work. ...

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Itron Inc. buys SmartSynch for $100 million

SmartSynch, a Jackson-based energy technology firm, has been acquired by Itron Inc. The $100 million deal was announced yesterday and is expected to close by the second quarter of 2012. Itron, Inc. (NASDAQ:ITRI) is a leader in the global energy and water resource management market with headquarters in Liberty Lake, Wash. They work with 8,000 utilities worldwide and employ more ...

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Itron signs agreement to buy SmartSynch for $100M

JACKSON — Itron Inc. of Liberty Lake, Wash., has signed an agreement to acquire SmartSynch Inc. in a transaction valued at $100 million. The parties said they expect the transaction to close in the second quarter of 2012. “SmartSynch is a compelling strategic acquisition that strengthens our position in the industry and with our energy and water utility customers,” said ...

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Senate approves change to budget-writing process

JACKSON — The Mississippi Senate has given final approval to a change in the state’s budget-writing process. The change is in House Concurrent Resolution 33, which sets the Legislature’s operating rules for the four-year term that started last month. Under one new rule, any legislator who wants to add money to a state program must say specifically which other agency’s ...

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