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Week of April 8, 2024

Clay Mansell

By Representative Clay Mansell


This was the fifteenth week of the 2024 legislative session. Wednesday was the deadline for the House to discuss general Senate bills. Any Senate bills that did not make it off the calendar and before the House died.


After the Senate killed the House’s education funding formula proposal (INSPIRE Act), House Education Chairman Rob Roberson (R – Starkville) introduced a strike-all amendment to Senate Bill 2693 inserting the language into the bill. The amended legislation passed 104-16 and has been returned to the Senate. If passed, the INSPIRE Act would replace the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP), the current formula that has only been fully funded twice since its inception in 1997.


Because it is late in the session, much of the week was spent deciding whether to concur with any changes made to House bills by the Senate or to invite conference on those bills. In conference, representatives and senators work together to finalize the details of each bill before they are sent to the governor. Included in the bills being sent to conference are most of the revenue and appropriations bills from both the House and Senate, which will determine the state’s budget.


Next week as the session begins to wind down, legislators will spend much of their time in conference committees ironing out the final details of bills that were sent to conference. These conference committees will then have to file reports before the end of the session.


On Thursday, the House honored former Representative Benjamin Eric Robinson, Sr. who passed away in 2023. Robinson served District 84 (portions of Clarke, Jasper, Lauderdale and Newton Counties) from 1994 until his retirement in 2007. His wife Teresa, children and grandchildren were presented with House Resolution 57, which recognized his legislative career and offered condolences upon his passing.


The House also recognized Okolona native and World War II veteran Mr. L.C. Gladney and presented him with House Resolution 71. He was also presented with the Mississippi Veterans Honor Medal by Mississippi Veterans Affairs Executive Director Mark Smith. Gladney, who will turn 100 years old in May, addressed the House and spoke of his time at Camp Shelby and serving in France.


Other visitors this week included the Piney Woods School, Oak Grove High School, the Meridian High School Boys Basketball team, the Long Beach High School Choir, Accelerate MS and the Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency.


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