Mississippi Legislature Adjourns Sine Die
End of Session
The 2022 Legislative Session officially came to a close. It was a wild ride, with twists and turns along the way. All said and done, I’m proud of what we accomplished this year. Below are some highlights of this year’s session.
Special Guests at the Capitol
Near the end of the session, I had a very special visitor – my mom! Mrs. Anna Johnson was joined by her good friend, Jean Lux.
Income Tax Relief
The Legislature passed and the Governor signed House Bill 531, the Mississippi Tax Freedom Act of 2022. This legislation represents the largest tax cut in the history of Mississippi, and I was proud to support a plan to put money back into the pockets of the hard-working Mississippians who earned it.
Hattiesburg receives appropriations
The city of Hattiesburg received more than $10 million through the appropriations process this year! The appropriations included $6 million for Camp Shelby, $3 million for improvements to the Reed Green Coliseum, $1.75 million for infrastructure in Midtown, $250,000 for Gordon’s Creek, and $125,000 for Dabbs Street. I’m thankful for my colleagues working with me to secure this necessary funding for our area.
As I’ve mentioned a few times throughout the session, an issue on which I’ve worked particularly hard is reforming Mississippi’s alcoholic beverage warehouse, which in recent years has struggled to keep up with demand and has faced calls to be replaced by the private sector. I’m proud to say that this year, the Legislature passed Senate Bill 2844, which privatizes warehouse operations for increased efficiency. This legislation will significantly streamline Mississippi’s alcoholic beverage distribution system by engaging the private sector.
American Rescue Plan Appropriations
Last year, Congress passed The American Rescue Plan, which gave $1.8 billion to Mississippi to address issues caused or exacerbated by Covid. The Mississippi Legislature appropriated just over $1.5 billion of that, leaving nearly $300 million to be allocated over the next several years. Highlights of these spending bills include $450 million for water and sewer infrastructure, $300 million for the Department of Health, $60 million for workforce development, and $337 million for capital investments to state buildings.
Teacher Pay Raise
As a member of the Senate Education Committee, I was proud to support House Bill 530, which provides pay raises for our teachers of an average of more than $5,000/year. Mississippi’s teachers are the front lines bestowing wisdom, knowledge, and care to our children. With this legislation, our teachers are finally paid at a level that is competitive with our neighboring states.
Protecting Property Rights
House Bill 1769 provided additional protections to property owners in Mississippi. Passed by both chambers and signed by the Governor, this bill prohibits any state or local government from taking private property through Eminent Domain and conveying the property to a private entity. I am proud to have supported this bill, and I will always fight for Mississippians’ property rights.
Following each census, the Legislature must redraw Congressional and Legislative districts based on population shifts. This session, we redrew lines for both Congressional and Legislative districts based on data we received from the 2020 Census. The new Legislative and Congressional maps were approved by both chambers.
Looking Ahead to Next Session
While the lights in the Capitol are still warm from the 2022 session, your Legislature is already gearing up for the 2023 session, including identifying key issues, meeting with stakeholders, and beginning the bill drafting process. Are there any issues important to you that you’d like to see addressed next session? Do you have any thoughts on legislation passed this year? Let me know at email@example.com.