Topping news in Mississippi this week:

  • Contrary to speculation, a rewrite of the state’s school funding formula won’t be on the agenda for the upcoming special session of the Mississippi Legislature in June.
  • After months of debate on whether a state lottery would boost state revenue collection, House Speaker Philip Gunn formed a lottery study commission this week. The last 11 regular Legislative sessions have seen about 50 bills die in committee that would have created a state lottery. Mississippi is one of six states without any form of lottery.
  • Under a new proposal from Speaker Gunn, voters could decide whether to raise local taxes for infrastructure improvements in their communities. The funding pitch came almost exactly a month before the special session to fund the Mississippi Department of Transportation and two other departments for the next fiscal year.