Early voting proposal advances

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An early voting bill is on its way to the Senate after it passed the House Wednesday afternoon.

House Bill 228, called the “Pre-Election Day Voting Act,” passed 113 to 8. The bill would create an early voting period that begins 14 days before election day and ends at noon on the Saturday before the election.

Mississippi House

Rep. Cory Wilson, R-Madison

Rep. Cory Wilson, R-Madison, told the House the bill revises the rules for absentee voters in Mississippi.

“The major difference for the voter is that once they go cast a pre-election day ballot, that is a permanent vote,” Wilson said.

Under the current law, he said, “If you go to the courthouse and vote absentee prior to the election and you decide that you want to vote in person or it works out that you can go vote, that vote on election day overrides the absentee ballot. In other words, it’s not necessarily a final ballot.”

Wilson said “the categories of voters who are entitled to vote absentee will be restricted and reduced” because people who typically use that method because they are out of their county on election day will be able to come in and vote during the two-week pre-election period.

In total, the House passed more than two dozen bills Wednesday, including:

House Bill 1322: Passed 94 to 23, allows small craft breweries to sell beer and light wine on the premises.

House Bill 711: Passed 107 to 15, known as the Mississippi Motion Picture Incentive Act, the bill grants the Department of Revenue more authority to offer rebates for companies to film in the state.