Mississippi Edition


ME 2/14/20 - Flood Threat | Buffer Zone Ordinance | Clergy for Prison Reform | Forks of the Road

The latest on the Pearl River flood threat with MEMA Director Greg Michel.

And a lawsuit blocking a city buffer zone ordinance gets sent back to state court.

Then, a Clergy group advocates for prison reform.

Plus, the Forks of the Road in Natchez gets closer to national park status.

Segment 1:

Heavier-than-expected rainfalls this are causing a major flood threat for northeast and downtown Jackson, as well as western Rankin County. The Pearl River is projected to rise and crest near 38.0 feet early Sunday morning - the highest levels since 1983. We are joined by Greg Michel, Director of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency.

Segment 2:

A lawsuit challenging a City of Jackson ordinance that places a buffer between protestors and the state's only abortion clinic will now be heard in state court. A lawsuit filed by the Mississippi Justice Institute challenges the ordinance, saying it violates their right to free speech under Mississippi's Constitution. We talk to Aaron Rice, Director of the Mississippi Justice Institute and Diane Derzis, owner of the Jackson Women's Health Organization.

Segment 3:

Members of the Clergy from across the state and from different denominations are rallying for prison reform at the State Capitol. Members of Clergy for Prison Reform say it is time for state legislators to give ex-prisoners a new chance at life. Wesley Bridges is CEO of Clergy for Prison Reform and Pastor at Unity Worship Ministry in Monticello. He says the organization's policy is based on the biblical teachings of Jesus.

Segment 4:

In 1995, Clifford M. Boxley was set to leave his hometown of Natchez for the African continent - where he planned to live out the rest of his life. But the history of his hometown called on him to stay, preserve, and reinterpret that complex history. Twenty-five years later, Mr. Boxley is leading the charge to have the historic Forks of the Road attain national park status. He tells us more about his mission.

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4/8/21 - Dispelling Vaccine Myths | Grocery Tax | Book Club: Carolyn Brown | Cyber Crimes Task Force

Health leaders continue to address vaccine hesitancy.And, most states don’t have a sales tax on groceries.But, Alabama and Mississippi do. And that money could go a long way for low-income residents.Then, in our Book Club, one of the country’s largest collections of children’s literature can be found at the University of Southern Mississippi.Now there’s a book about all those books.Plus, the AG's office teams up with the Secret Service to fight cyber fraud.Segment 1:Doctors with the Mississippi Department of Health and the University of Mississippi Medical Center are working to dispel myths about the coronavirus vaccines.The efforts are part of a targeted approach to increase vaccinations within communities of color.During the early stages of the pandemic, Black and Native Mississippians were hit disproportionately hard by the virus.Since the vaccine rollout, two major challenges have emerged in the attempt to inoculate communities of color: access and hesitancy.Segment 2:Politicians on both sides of the aisle in Mississippi and Alabama have been trying – and failing – to cut the grocery tax for over a decade. It’s a sales tax that impacts low-income families the most and the majority of states don’t have it. Mississippi’s latest attempt to slash it failed when the Legislative Session ended last week. Stephan Bisaha of the Gulf States Newsroom reports on why the tax is so hard to get rid of and how Louisiana did it.Segment 3:The University of Southern Mississippi houses one of the largest collections of children’s literature in the country and we have Lena De Grummond to thank.Spending most of her adult life as a librarian in Louisiana, de Grummond was forced to retire at age 65.She was offered a job teaching Children’s literature at Southern Miss and, in an effort to reward her hard-working adult students, began soliciting materials from children’s authors and illustrators around the country.Carolyn J. Brown is one of the editors of the new book, “A De Grummond Primer: Highlights of the Children’s Literature Collection.She says De Grummond never intended to start a collection.Segment 4:Cyber crime is on the rise in Mississippi, including wire fraud, ransomware, and use of crypto-currency in illegal transactions.Now, the state's chief legal officer is partnering with the Secret Service to target these crimes.Attorney General Lynn Fitch says her office will use this new partnership to prosecute the growing number of cyber crimes.

4/7/21 - Gov. Addresses Vaccine Hesitancy | Medicaid Expansion Ballot Initiative | Southern Remedy Health Minute | Legislative Recap

State officials continue to encourage residents to get shots as Mississippi attempts to climb from the bottom rungs of the national vaccination tables.Then, a coalition of health leaders file an initiative to put Medicaid expansion on the ballot.Plus, after a Southern Remedy Health Minute, we recap the 2021 legislative session.Segment 1:Over four months into vaccine availability, more than 1.3 million Mississippians have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine according to Governor Tate Reeves.But, the Magnolia State still sits toward the bottom of the national tables when it comes to partially and fully vaccinated rates, and Reeves says he is concerned about vaccine hesitancy. Yesterday, flanked by a number of doctors including State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs, Reeves addressed the concerns for hesitancy and says some residents are slowly realizing the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.Segment 2:After years of political punting by state leaders and legislators, a coalition of medical professionals are leading the charge to expand Medicaid in Mississippi.First reported by Mississippi Today, a group - including the President of the Hospital Association - filed an an application with the Secretary of State's office to make the question of expansion a ballot initiative.Healthcare for Mississippi is the non-profit behind the new Initiative 76 effort.Dr. John Gaudet is part of the effort.He shares more with our Michael Guidry.Segment 3:Southern Remedy Health MinuteSegment 4:Mississippi Lawmakers closed out the 2021 legislative session one week ago today- allocating the state’s $6 billion budget across a range of state agencies and programs.MPB’s Senior Reporter Desare Frazier covers the state legislator and is here to give us a recap.

4/6/21 - PPP Extension | Child Abuse Awareness | Faith Leaders Respond to Voting Laws

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