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As 2017 winds down, Mississippi economic growth looks to be less than 1 percent

By TED CARTER The indicators state economists use to assess the health of Mississippi’s economy showed the same lethargy in August as they did at the start of the year. “August represented another example of the relative sluggishness that has characterized the Mississippi economy in 2017,” said the October edition of Mississippi’s Business prepared by the University Research Center of ...

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Leaders not dismissing possible statewide vote on tax hike

By BOBBY HARRISON / Daily Journal A proposal to allow voters to decide whether to increase taxes to pay for transportation needs was not rejected Tuesday by the state’s Republican leadership. The presiding officers in the Legislature – Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves in the Senate and House Speaker Philip Gunn – nor Gov. Phil Bryant completely dismissed the proposal of ...

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LGBT allies ask U.S. Supreme Court to quash a Mississippi law that lets people refuse service to gay couples

Advocates of same-sex marriage are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down a new Mississippi law that lets government workers and business people cite their own religious objections to refuse services to LGBT people. An appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was filed within hours of when the law took effect Tuesday. Legal experts say it’s the broadest religious-objections ...

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Senator’s plan to raise taxes for transportation maintenance

Mississippi residents could vote on a state lawmaker’s plan that would raise taxes and fees to pay for needed renovations to roads and bridges. Mississippi Central District Transportation Commissioner Dick Hall on Monday announced the bill Republican state Sen. Dean Kirby of Pearl plans to introduce next year, The Clarion-Ledger reports . Kirby’s plan is in draft phase and includes a statewide ...

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Hall bemoans lack of effort to fix highways, bridges

By BOBBY HARRISON / Daily Journal Central District Transportation Commissioner Dick Hall donned a red “Make Mississippi roads great again” hat Monday as he talked about the state’s transportation needs and the Legislature’s unwillingness to tackle the issue. Hall said some in the Legislature must think his multiple warnings that the state needs to spend significantly more on transportation are ...

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Adams County looks at refinancing bond debt

The proposed refinancing of some bond debt would save Adams County about $25,000 a year. The Natchez Democrat reports that the Board of Supervisors got the news last week. Supervisors heard from Duncan-Williams Investment Bankers representatives. The county is considering refinancing a 2013 bond used to purchase the former International Paper site for industrial development purposes. Board of Supervisors President Mike Lazarus ...

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State revenue ahead of pace through 1st quarter

By BOBBY HARRISON / Daily Journal State revenue collections for the first quarter of the current budget year are $30.7 million or 2.6 percent above the amount collected during the same time period last year. Revenue collections through September recently were made available by the staff of the Legislative Budget Committee. The Budget Committee reports show modest growth in revenue ...

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Lumumba undaunted on Jackson convention hotel after latest deal unravels

JRA dropped developer EDT after it insisted on $60 million public contribution By TED CARTER New Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba is not ready to call it quits on a convention center hotel after the demise of the Jackson Redevelopment Authority’s two-year effort to complete a deal for one. A Sept. 27 Redevelopment Authority decision to drop Washington, D.C.-based Engineering Design Technologies ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: State contract review process still floundering

Just when you thought it might finally be safe to swim in Mississippi’s contractual storm waters, the MDE and Mississippi True contracts erupted.   As reported by The Clarion-Ledger, “both State Auditor Stacey Pickering and the state’s legislative watchdog ‘PEER’ committee blasted the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) and vowed further investigation into its contracting and purchasing.”    PEER questioned ...

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Hurst confirmed as top US prosecutor in south Mississippi

Mike Hurst has been confirmed as the new U.S. attorney for the southern half of Mississippi. The state’s two U.S. senators, Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker, announced Wednesday that Hurst was confirmed late Tuesday by unanimous consent in the Senate. Hurst is director of the Mississippi Justice Institute, part of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy. He was an assistant ...

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