Articles by Emily Wagster Pettus

Mississippi Gov Orders Sexual Harassment Prevention Training for State Workers

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant announced Tuesday that by executive order, he’s requiring all state employees to take online training in sexual harassment awareness and prevention. “This should be a low-cost alternative to expensive seminars and provide a standard of prevention …

FEMA Questions Mississippi City’s Spending of 2014 Tornado Recovery Grant

A division of the federal government says the city of Louisville, Miss., should repay a $25.4 million grant awarded for recovery from a 2014 tornado. However, state Auditor Stacey Pickering said he is working with federal and local officials to …

Mississippi Insurance Agent Charged in Prison Bribery Case

An insurance agent from Jackson, Miss., is the latest person indicted in a corruption case tied to the former head of the Mississippi prison system. Guy E. “Butch” Evans, 61, appeared Aug. 24 in U.S. District Court in Jackson and …

Louisiana Governor: Flood Damage at Least $8.7B

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards says his state had more than $8.7 billion in damage from catastrophic flooding in August, and the figure will increase as officials finish assessing damage to roads and other public infrastructure. The governor’s office on …

Major Storm System Causes Widespread Flooding in Mississippi

As the Leaf River rose north of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, 26-year-old Rebecca Bruce and her fiancé grabbed what they could and left the shed where they live. The water was more than 2 feet deep indoors when they left, she said. …

Mississippi Insurance Commissioner to Run Unopposed in November

State election officials removed the Reform Party candidate for Mississippi insurance commissioner from the Nov. 3 ballot, saying it was impossible to know whether he had lived in the state long enough to run. The decision leaves Republican Mike Chaney …

Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Being Challenged in Upcoming Primary

Second-term Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney is being challenged in the Republican primary by John Mosley, a body shop owner who says insurance companies have gotten away with paying for less-than-perfect replacement parts to repair damaged vehicles. Chaney supporters criticize …

2 Small Weekend Earthquakes Shake Central Mississippi

State emergency officials said no injuries or major damage were reported Saturday night as two small earthquakes briefly shook central Mississippi – a part of the state where quakes are unusual. The U.S. Geological Survey said both occurred in Madison …

Mississippi Approves $17M for Tornado Recovery

The Mississippi Legislature met in a three-hour session Thursday approved $17 million to help pay for recovery from disasters, including tornadoes that recently pounded the state. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant signed the funding measure, Senate Bill 2001, and it became …

Mississippi Governor to Sign Religious Practices Bill Opposed by Civil Rights, Gay Groups

Mississippi lawmakers on Tuesday passed the final version of a bill that says state and local governments cannot put a substantial burden on religious practices, a measure that sparked debate about possible discrimination against gay people and other groups. An …