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Regulators seek comment on rule to aid solar development

JACKSON — Though Mississippi has lagged in its use of solar energy, it may be starting to catch up. Tuesday, the state Public Service Commission voted to seek comments on a proposed rule that would mandate that utilities pay solar panel owners for power they generate. Also Tuesday, Entergy Mississippi held a groundbreaking for a commercial solar facility adjacent to ...

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5 years after BP spill, industry touts ability to respond

NEW ORLEANS — An oil consortium says an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico today can be cleaned up far faster than five years ago when BP’s Macondo well blew out 45 miles off the coast of Louisiana, spawning the nation’s worst offshore oil spill. It took BP and the industry’s best containment technology 87 days to contain the ...

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PSC offers 'net metering' proposal

MBJ staff and wire Mississippi’s utility regulators are proposing rules that would be relatively favorable for residential users to deploy solar panels, but they’re leaving wiggle room for changes. The Public Service Commission voted Tuesday to issue its proposed “net metering” rule, with plans to accept public comments through July 1 and then hold a public hearing. The rule would ...

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UPDATED: Florida firm slapped with $1.3M No Call fine

JACKSON — The Mississippi Public Service Commission has fined a Florida company $1.3 million for 266 violations of the state’s No Call law. But with Global Financial Assist LLC having gone out of business, the fine may be more symbolic than actual. The fines come to $5,000 for each of the unauthorized calls the telemarketer made to Mississippi residents, said PSC ...

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MARTY WISEMAN: Human Capital — Merely Buying Time

The fact that the 2015 legislative session is drawing to a close with the status quo having been maintained may be viewed as a victory of sorts – but alas all indications are that it may be only a temporary reprieve. Just prior to the beginning of the current legislative session Senior State Economist Dr. Darrin Webb was interviewed by ...

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OSHA investigating accident at Ingalls Shipyard

PASCAGOULA — Federal officials are investigating an accident at Ingalls Shipyard in Pascagoula last week that sent an employee to the hospital. On Monday, company spokesman Bill Glenn told The Sun Herald the company prepared a release but did not send it to the media. He did not say why the release was not sent last week. When asked Monday ...

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Business groups file briefs in support of Kemper coal plant rehearing

By JACK WEATHERLY Three business-support groups have filed briefs with the Mississippi Supreme Court, asking for a rehearing of the case in which a rate increase for Mississippi Power Co. customers was reversed and a refund ordered. The Mississippi Economic Council, the Mississippi Manufacturers Association and the Mississippi Gulf Coast Business Council are seeking to get another review of the ...

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Gulfport buys Ingalls facility for $32 million

GULFPORT— The Board of Commissioners for the Mississippi State Port Authority has approved the purchase for $32 million a Huntington Ingalls Gulfport facility located about five miles inland. The acquisition is part of a long-range plan to develop an inland port as an extension of the Port of Gulfport, the authority said Friday in a news release. The 116-acre location will increase capacity ...

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Suit against Kemper employee Brett Wingo is dismissed

Jack Weatherly A case involving a key manager at Mississippi Power Co’.s Kemper County clean-coal plant who had been taken to court in Birmingham by the utility’s parent has been dismissed. To keep Brett J. Wingo from going public with information about the plant — which the company said would do it great harm — the Southern Co. succeeded in ...

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Law to bolster utilities’ economic development efforts gets mixed reactions

A bill to bolster electric utilities’ economic development efforts sailed through the Mississippi Legislature and was signed by Gov. Phil Bryant on March 13. But after-the-fact reaction to the law ranges from suspicion and alarm to a characterization that such an interpretation is merely a tempest in a teapot. It could put customers of the state’s two investor-owned utilities, Entergy ...

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