Here is a recap of a few highlights from this week in my role as State Senator from District 52, as well as updates from our Congressional Campaign. Fulfilling my duties as State Senator will be a top priority for me during this campaign. After all, I took an oath to honorably serve my constituents and the Constitution.
“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”
Passed The Largest Teacher Pay Raise In Mississippi History
This was a monumental moment in Mississippi history! This past Tuesday, the MS Legislature passed the largest teacher pay raise in state history. Starting teacher pay will be increased from $37,123 to $41,638, which puts our state above the southeastern and national averages. This was a hard-fought battle by both the House and the Senate, but here we are!
As a Senate Education Committee member, its passage has been a goal of mine to help us compete in attracting new teachers, retain our current teachers and recognize the valuable work our teachers do. I have always stood behind our state’s educators and promise to continue to do so as your Congressman. After all, our teachers are responsible for shaping the future of America. Click HERE to read the Mississippi Today article for more details.
Ocean Springs: Met With Members of the Lighthouse Academy
Meeting with constituents face to face matters. On Tuesday, I met with members of the Lighthouse Academy from Ocean Springs on the steps of the Capitol. This group is dedicated to the enrichment of academics for dyslexic children. I appreciate their interest, and together I know we can get things done.
We Need to Make Public Service Attractive To Young People Again
I know how meaningful it can be to serve as a role model for young people. Having been a soccer coach for 20+ years, a high school mock trial coach for 8+ years, a baseball coach, Sunday school teacher, and author of the Early Learning Collaborative Act, I’ve seen the results of investing in our children and youth.. Those of us in Public Service need to continue to set the bar high in our acts, words and deeds.
Developing the leaders of tomorrow is more than a seminar, it’s a life calling, and continuing that calling is important to me. You can watch our policy video on this topic HERE.
Arts Day at the Capitol
I always look forward to Arts Day at the Capitol organized by the Mississippi Arts Commission. The day includes exhibits from arts-focused organizations in the rotunda to encourage support for the arts and to promote why the arts matter to our communities. Last year it was a virtual event, and it was great to see it back in person. Pictured here, I got to visit with Julian Rankin, Executive Director of the Walter Anderson Museum of Art (WAMA) in Ocean Springs.
No Proxy Voting for Me
No proxy voting for me. My job is to be engaged in the process for you. I spent this weekend working in Jackson in my Senate capacity. This particular weekend each year is what is called Conference Weekend, where members of the Legislature work in small groups as “conference committees” (3 members of the House and 3 members of the Senate) to work out compromises on bills. This weekend an agreement was reached about the Tax Cut bill. We’ll be sharing more about that over the next few days.
The Week Ahead:
Finalize tax cut
State legislative redistricting
Equal Pay legislation for women