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Tag Archives: Bill Crawford

BILL CRAWFORD: Mississippi back on bottom in senior health rankings

Mississippi is getting older. No, this is not about our Bicentennial, but our people.    Since 1980 Mississippi’s total population increased 18.5 percent but the population of residents aged 65 and older jumped 43.3 percent.  This pushed the median age up from 27.6 years in 1980 to 36.5 years in 2015. Over that time, the percentage of population aged 65 and older moved from ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Freddy Joe should not pay taxes until Donny Joe does

It’s time for Mississippi taxpayers to stand up to tax dodgers.   It’s time to revolt against the State’s unfair and discriminatory behavior in the collection of taxes on retail sales. You see, Mississippi law requires residents to pay taxes on all retail sales, except those specifically exempt. But, the State’s arbitrary and selective enforcement of tax collections provides a ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Who cares about health care in Mississippi?

Mississippi finishes last – again – among all states in annual health ranking,” read the December headline in the Biloxi Sun-Herald. “Mississippi dropped to dead last this year among all 50 states in the annual ‘America’s Health Rankings’ released by the United Health Foundation,” continued the story. “As one of the nation’s poorest states, Mississippi has a legacy of poor ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Controlling the Kudzu of state spending

One of my many anonymous critics on a local blog zapped me last week over my column “A Peek behind Legislative Leaders’ Rhetoric.” In particular, he/she said I lack “a coherent alternate plan” of my own.   Well, I never guessed it might be a columnist’s job to propose a whole budget plan. But, an avid reader could find elements of ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Public contract reforms unsung but epic

As the dismal saga of bribery and extortion swirling around former Commissioner Chris Epps and Mississippi Department of Corrections contracts continues to make headlines, epic reforms to the public contracting process slipped through the Legislature with scant media attention.    Longtime champion of contract reform Representative Jerry Turner passed legislation that completely revamps the public contract review board and tightens ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Legislature needs rightsizing too

Republican legislators insist they are making the right moves to “rightsize” state government, which includes shrinking the state budget. If they mean what they say, the Legislature, itself, should be on the rightsizing menu too.    Mississippi has one of the larger legislatures in the United States, especially for our small population. We have 122 representatives and 52 senators for ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Republican leaders turn legislative session into fiasco

Give it a break, guys. The we-can’t-spend-money-we-don’t-have argument is just a little too false-hearted.   The GOP talking point was embellished by House Public Health Committee Chairman Sam Mills:   “What I always tell my children, gentlemen, is that we can’t print money,” Mims said. “Often I look outside in my backyard, and I say, ‘Do you see a money tree?’ And ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Stores closed by online competition impact community finances

J.C. Penney announced it will close five stores in Mississippi communities – Columbus, Corinth, Greenville, Meridian, and Oxford. Earlier Sears announced three closures in Columbus, Jackson, and McComb, with more to come. Even Wal-Mart has closed stores, in Belmont, Mantachie, Sardis, Walnut, Derma and Nettleton.    Two years ago Radio Shack closed 20 stores in Mississippi, in Jackson, Hattiesburg, Meridian, ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Concentrated power on rise in Mississippi Legislature

Concentrated power in the Legislature waxes and wanes with the attitudes of rank and file members. At times, Speakers of the House and Lieutenant Governors have wielded dictator-like power. At other times, members have risen up and made the bodies operate more democratically. Concentrated power is waxing once again as rank and file legislators cede power to their leaders.   The Mississippi ...

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