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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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TODD SMITH — 10 social media trends to consider for future

Social media platforms will continue their rapid disruption as a communications vehicle in the digital world – and a number of new tech advancements will continue to leverage these tools for audiences around the world. As the waves of social media surge, here are the top 10 future social media trends according to Entrepreneur. 1. Rise of augmented reality At ...

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Analysis: Mississippi could have tough 2018 Senate race

Mississippi’s most recent Republican primary for U.S. Senate was hard-fought and ugly, and it might be a preview of things to come in 2018. State Sen. Chris McDaniel came close to unseating longtime U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran in 2014 by portraying the Appropriations Committee chairman as a big-spending Washington insider who belonged to an out-of-touch political elite. Voters ultimately chose ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Quickie budget hearings produce few surprises

The Legislature’s quickie budget hearings produced few surprises last week. Schools, colleges, and universities, as usual, asked for lots more money while legislators, as usual, focused on holding down spending.   One unusual aspect, compared to recent history, was the absence of a looming budget cut due to revenue shortfalls. State tax collections for the first two months of this ...

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Analysis: Do regulators hear praises of Mississippi Power?

It’s beginning to sound like 2010 again at the Public Service Commission. Business and government leaders have streamed into rate proceedings over Mississippi Power Co.’s Kemper County power plant, supporting the utility’s position. And Mississippi Power, a unit of Atlanta-based Southern Co., has taken an aggressive position that commissioners should hurry up and do what the company wants, instead of ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Rights, entitlements, public interest and health care

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service lists the following as the rights of American citizenship: freedom of expression; freedom to worship as you wish; right to a prompt, fair trial by jury; right to vote in elections for public officials; right to apply for federal employment requiring U.S. citizenship; right to run for elected office; and freedom to pursue “life, liberty, ...

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TODD SMITH — How the public approaches facts and information

How does today’s audience engage with news, facts and information? Does the subject hook them? How much do they trust the sources? How eager are they to learn? What is competing for their attention? How much access do they have to the information in the first place? A new Pew Research Center survey explores these five broad dimensions of people’s ...

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