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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

PRESS CLIPPINGS: Wednesday, February 15, 2006

1. The Department of Finance and Administration has become a political extension of Gov. Barbour. No wonder he wants to put DFA and MDA together with him in a building renovated SPECIFICALLY FOR THE ATTORNEY GENERAL. I'm still trying to figure out why the press is not digging more into the amount of money the governor wants to waste in renovating a building that has been specially equipped with security measures and technology upgrades designed for law enforcement. This story is about DFA saying the state can't afford the mental health facilities they approved. I guess the gov and DFA think it's just fine to lock up innocent men and women and pass the financial buck to the county level. Is that what Republicans call "compassionate conservatism"?
Mental health centers revisited - The Clarion-Ledger:
Political pressure is mounting to construct a mental health crisis center in Brookhaven with $19 million on the horizon for centers statewide.

Law enforcement and residents have waited seven years for the state to construct an estimated $2.9 million facility in Brookhaven. Southwest Mississippi is the only region without a center.

"They just need to go on and build the thing," Sen. Billy Thames, D-Mize, who helped create the centers, said Tuesday.But the Department of Finance and Administration says the future of a center in Brookhaven is not certain.
2. The C-L is reminding elected officials not to ignore the children trapped in a troubled DHS system.
Legislature '06 - The Clarion-Ledger:
Meanwhile, a federal lawsuit alleging serious failings in the state's foster care program is painting a grim picture demanding attention. Although the lawsuit filed by New York-based Children's Rights suing the Mississippi Department of Human Services presents only one side of a legal argument, using DHS figures, it notes:

Nearly 88 percent of children in DHS custody were not seen at least monthly by their social worker in a year;

About 32 percent of the youngest foster children in custody for at least one year did not receive a physical.

3. House still looking at fully funding education.
House passes ed budget short of full funding -
Education at full funding levels accounts for more than $2 billion of the total state budget. House Education Committee Chairman Cecil Brown, D-Jackson, said the House leadership still supports full funding and hopes to achieve that goal before the session ends.

But the House chose not to make a statement on full funding for education early because of the uncertainty in the budget process.


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