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House bill would clarify who can vote in primary runoffs

February 12, 2015

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Chris McDaniel

JACKSON — A bill clarifying who can vote in party primary runoffs is moving forward. The House Thursday passed House Bill 1069 (http://bit.ly/1BE2wy3 ) by a vote of 101-19. It makes it a misdemeanor to vote or try to vote in one party’s primary runoff after voting in another party’s primary. The bill, which moves to […]

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College Board could discuss new higher education leader

February 12, 2015

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JACKSON — Mississippi could get a new leader of its higher education system soon. The College Board is scheduled to meet Thursday afternoon to discuss personnel issues. Board President Aubrey Patterson of Tupelo wouldn’t say Wednesday whether the board will discuss a successor Thursday to Higher Education Commissioner Hank Bounds. Under a 2013 board policy, […]

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Miss. Senate rejects effort to dump Common Core standards

February 12, 2015

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JACKSON — Mississippi could create a 27-member commission to recommend new academic standards for its schools, under a bill passed by the state Senate on Wednesday. But after more than an hour of debate, senators rejected an effort to change the bill to make the state unequivocally dump Common Core State Standards. The effort to […]

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Special education voucher plan passes Mississippi Senate

February 12, 2015

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JACKSON — Mississippi senators have voted to give $7,000 vouchers to a small percentage of special education students so they could go to private school or receive other education services outside the public schools. Senate Bill 2695 passed Wednesday, with 27 senators voting for it and 21 against it. The proposal will move to the […]

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Miss. lawmakers working to change state contract process

February 12, 2015

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JACKSON — The Mississippi House has passed a bill designed to bring more public scrutiny to state government contracts. House Bill 825 on Wednesday and will move to the Senate for more work. The bill would create a new contract review board, with members appointed by the governor and lieutenant governor. The proposed changes come […]

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Senate backs convention to mandate federal balanced budget

February 11, 2015

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JACKSON — State senators want to sign Mississippi onto a plan for a nationwide constitutional convention that would force the federal government to balance its budget and require states’ permission to increase the national debt. The Senate voted 30-18 Wednesday to pass Senate Bill 2389, seeking a convention. The measure moves to the House for […]

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Mississippi House OKs $2,500 raise for assistant teachers

February 11, 2015

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JACKSON — The Mississippi House has voted to give assistant teachers a substantial pay raise. The base pay for the job is currently $12,500 a year. A bill that was debated Wednesday originally would have set the base pay at $13,500. The House accepted a proposal by Democratic Rep. Cecil Brown of Jackson to set […]

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Miss. Senate passes bill to eliminate inspection stickers

February 11, 2015

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JACKSON — Some Mississippi senators don’t have up-to-date vehicle inspection stickers. Now they want other Mississippians to be able to forget about it too. Senators Wednesday passed Senate Bill 2519, which would repeal the requirement that vehicle owners get a $5 safety inspection each year. The bill goes to the House for more debate. Proponents, […]

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Obama proposes war authorization against Islamic State

February 11, 2015

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama asked Congress Wednesday to formally authorize military force against the Islamic State group, arguing the militants could pose a threat to the U.S. homeland if their violent power grab goes unchecked and urging lawmakers to “show the world we are united in our resolve to counter the threat.” The president elected […]

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Alabama begins issuing marriage licenses to gay couples

February 9, 2015

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MONTGOMERY — Alabama began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples Monday despite an 11th-hour attempt from the state’s chief justice — an outspoken opponent — to block the weddings. The U.S. Supreme Court said Monday morning that it wouldn’t stop the marriages from beginning in the state, and shortly after, probate judges began granting the […]

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