Lynn Walton presided over the meeting. Mark Killingsworth provided the opening prayer and Coty Primeaux led us in the Pledge of Allegiance. Lynn led the club in the Four Way Test. The meeting was held at the Holiday Inn in Hattiesburg and via Zoom.
Lynn reminded members that our club will not meet on May 31 since it is the fifth Tuesday of the month. The Wesley Manor project is being finalized. A workday is scheduled for June 11th beginning at 7:00 a.m. Every member is expected to participate. She reminded members to purchase their raffle tickets soon. Mark reported that a District Conference committee meeting will be held in the next couple of weeks.
Lucy Sanguinetti then introduced today’s guest speaker, Representative Missy Magee. Ms. Magee is the Representative for District 102, which includes the City of Hattiesburg.
Missy noted that the Legislature just wrapped up this year’s 90-day session. During the session a total of $1.8 billion was awarded. Although that may sound like a large number, there were requests before the Legislature of $7 billion. Revenue is running ahead of projections this year, largely due to an influx of federal money. Most of the money awarded went to local governments.
The 2022 Legislature passed the Medical Marijuana bill. The Department of Health is currently writing the rules and regulations for the legislation. The State Supreme Court overturned the ballot initiative, resulting in the need for the legislature to re-write the initiative which allows citizens to petition the legislature for action. That legislation failed and will come back for consideration during the next session.
There was an effort this session to eliminate the state income tax. Although the effort failed, the tax rates were reduced.
A teacher pay raise was passed during the session. The raise brings starting teacher pay above the southeast average.
Representative Magee worked on legislation that allows cities to board up and clean up vacant buildings. She also got legislation passed that allows food trucks to sell alcohol in go-cup districts if the truck’s owner has a brick & mortar facility and is licensed to sell alcohol out of the facility. She also got legislation passed that improves new-born screening in our state. The state can now screen new-borns for three more screenings that the federal government allows. And finally, she got legislation passed that tightens up regulations for school-based programs such as the Dubard School and the Children’s Center.
There being no further business to come before the club, Lynn thanked Representative Magee for her presentation and then adjourned the meeting with our motto: “Service Above Self.”