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Report from the Capitol
Rep. Noah Sanford
For the last two weeks, the House of Representatives has been gathered to discuss bills that had cleared the committee hurdle. Several bills were not ever brought up for a vote and, therefore, died on deadline day. A look at some others that made it through the House:
- House Bill 196, the “Dignity for Incarcerated Women Act,” would prescribe protocols for pregnant women who are incarcerated in the state’s prisons and require a certain level of care for the woman and the innocent child. Presently, there are four pregnant women in the state’s prison system. The bill passed unanimously 116-0.
- Aimed at assisting in the brain drain and the teacher shortage, House Bill 1136, the “Mississippi Educational Talent Recruitment Act,” would create an incentive for Mississippi college graduates to stay in the state and teach in public schools.
- House Bill 942 would permit investor-owned electric utilities—AT&T, Entergy, Mississippi Power, etc.—to lease their unused fiber infrastructure to third party broadband providers. Third-party broadband providers would be required to first provide broadband to areas of the state that are unserved or underserved. Most of this unused fiber is run between substations presently and could be utilized to extend broadband into areas that are most in need.
- House Bill 111 would allow junior and community colleges, at their discretion, to provide in-state tuition discounts to certain out-of-state students that live in counties just over the state line that neighbor the college’s district. Some community colleges have experienced stagnant or decreasing enrollment and see this as a way to help recruit students and help prevent in-state tuition from being increased.
The Senate passed dozens of bills on that end that will now head to the House. For the next few weeks, those bills will be considered in House committee.
I appreciate the opportunity to serve. Please contact me if I can be of assistance.
Rep. Noah Sanford represents parts of Covington, Simpson, and Jefferson Davis Counties in the Mississippi House of Representatives. He can be reached at 601-765-4122 or NSanford@house.ms.go
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