Jackson, Miss. (WAPT) – Mississippi lawmakers have allocated massive amounts of both new state money and a large infusion of federal funds in what was arguably one of the most impactful sessions in recent years.

During the session, which was wrapping up Tuesday, legislators signed off on medical marijuana, handed out the largest income tax cut in state history and approved a large pay hike for teachers.

“We have funded a quarter of a billion dollars for teachers in Mississippi to bring them up above the Southeastern average,” Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann said. “In addition to that, we funded $40 million to improve the school buildings in Mississippi.”

Lawmakers were bolstered by higher revenues than projected this year, and the infusion of $1.8 billion in American Rescue funds. Cities and counties were allocated $750 million in their needs for matching money to fix sewer and water and $50 million for smaller cities to receive a two-to-one match in water improvement projects.

“We did things like child protection services, mental health — a whole plethora of different issues in Mississippi,” Hosemann said.

“We didn’t do as well as we would have liked to, but we did pretty good,” said Sen. John Horhn, of Jackson.

While the city of Jackson was hoping for more help in dealing with its water crisis, it is getting millions with the promise of more to come.

“We were able to get a commitment of at least $25 million for the city’s water and infrastructure issues,” Horhn said.

The city will be able to apply with other agencies from that pool of $750 million for sewer and water. Those agencies, like Jackson, have already gotten direct money from the feds for that kind of work. They will be able to use that state money as a match to get more federal money.

View Original Story (Apr. 5, 2022)