Feature Photo

On June 12, 1963, just one day after President John F. Kennedy gave his landmark televised speech in support of Civil Rights, the activist Medgar Evers pulled into the driveway of his house in Jackson, Mississippi, back home from a meeting with NAACP lawyers. He got out of the car, carrying T-shirts stamped with the phrase "Jim Crow Must Go." Suddenly, Evers was hit by a bullet in the back. He died less than an hour later.

With help from U.S. Congressman Bennie Thompson and others committed to telling Mississippi's history, the Evers' home became a National Monument. The home has a complex legacy; it is both the site of a tragedy, where a Civil Rights crusader was assassinated in cold blood, and the family residence that Evers shared with his wife, Myrlie, and their three children.

"It will always be the home that Medgar Evers and I lived, loved and reared our children in," Myrlie Evers-Williams, a Civil Rights pioneer in her own right who turned 86 on Sunday, tells Jerry Mitchell of the Clarion Ledger. But she says that whenever she visits the property, "memories of the night [of the assassination] come flooding back into my entire being."

Read full story Click Here.

Information that Impacts Mississippians

Below are a few items I believe you, as a constituent, Mississippian, or friend, might find intriguing. Please click the BLUE links below for information about the following topics: 

Authored and Co-Authored Bills

It is hard to believe that session will likely be over in about two and a half weeks. Maybe it's the statewide election hype that has it moving along so quickly. Nonetheless, a lot of bills have either passed or died on the calendar. Please Click Here to see the bills I authored and co-authored that are dead or alive.
Ms. Grizzell and Mr. Ash are both two very bright kids who paged this week. She is from Jackson and he is from Senatobia. Ms. Grizzell and I got to talk about her fascination with Mound Bayou and Bolivar County. Mr. Ash and I got acquainted because we have a mutual acquaintance whom with I attended graduate school. It's always a joy to chat with the next generation of leaders.


Missed my old newsletters for the 2019 session? No problem. Please click the blue link below to catch up on what's been happening in the Mississippi Legislature.

Several groups visited legislators at the Capitol this week: Mississippi Library Commission, Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation Women, Planned Parenthood, Mississippi Arts Commission, and both the Hattiesburg Zoo & Jackson Zoo. Does anyone know what these two animals are from the Jackson Zoo?

On Wednesday, the Mississippi Legislative Black Caucus hosted Policy Director Fred Jones and the Southern Education Foundation . This legislative session, both Senator Derrick T. Simmons and I introduced companion "Community Schools" bills that address some of the challenges rural communities have educating our youth. Community schools are "public schools" that partner with families and community organizations to provide comprehensive educational services for academic success at elementary or secondary schools. The bill died on the calendar this year with no action but I am optimistic about future sessions to get this bill passed. Please Click Here to read more about the bill.

*From left to right: Senator Derrick T. Simmons, Chairwoman Sonya Williams Barnes, Policy Director Fred Jones, Senator Willie Simmons, and I.

In this photograph, Representative Kevin Ford presented a bill on the floor last week. He is not technically my deskmate, but we are on the same row. Oftentimes, we lean over and discuss bills that we vote for or against. We never get bothered by why one voted the one way or the other way, but we try to understand or votes based upon the needs of our individual areas. In every interaction with my colleagues, I attempt to help them to better understand my part of the state.

Two of my school districts (North Bolivar Consolidated School District and West Bolivar Consolidated School District) are on the Mississippi Department of Education's Geographical Shortage Area School Districts list. And if you take a close look at the list, the Mississippi Delta has disproportionate representation. While other areas will suffer from NO teacher pay raise, the Mississippi Delta area would continue to spiral down in this crisis. I am hopeful we can pay our educators more. With your help, we can!!! Please email and call your Senator and encourage them to vote for supporting EDUCATORS in Mississippi.

Last week, there were several kids who visited the Two Mississippi Museums. I decided to go over one day after session and welcome a few of them to Jackson. Plus, I love going over to visit the Mound Bayou section in the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. Here are a few facts about the museums:
  • Over a quarter of a million people have visited the Two Mississippi Museums since December 9th, 2017, exceeding our pre-opening projections.
  • Every week, school buses deliver children from around the state to enjoy everything the museums have to offer, whether it's interactive exhibits or lunch out on the plaza.
  • Most nights and weekends, the museum spaces are rented for events, programs, and family reunions.
  • Together, the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum and the Museum of Mississippi History have received many awards including the Southeastern Museums Conference Excellence in Exhibition Award and the Mississippi Tourism Association Travel Attraction of the Year Award.

Gloria Tramel is the Agriculture Committee Assistant in the Mississippi House of Representatives. I value all she does to help ensure we are able to carry out our legislative duties. She is one of many support staff at the Capitol that work behind the scenes to keep things moving.

2019 Mississippi Legislative
Session (Week 10)

This was the tenth week of the 2019 Legislative Session. Wednesday of this week was the deadline for the House to discuss general Senate bills. Any Senate bills that did not make it off the calendar died. The deadline to discuss Senate appropriations and other revenue bills will occur Tuesday, March 19. Many Senate general bills were discussed and debated, including the following:

Senate Bill 2770 would give teachers and assistant teachers a pay raise for the first time since the last raises were authorized over a two year period beginning in 2014. Initially, the bill stated that salaries would increase $1,000 to be phased in over two years. During Tuesday's floor action, the House Education Committee introduced the bill with a strike-all amendment with the same $1,000 raise. Representative Steve Holland offered an amendment to the strike-all raising the amount of the increase for teachers only from $1,000 to $4,000. The increase for assistant teachers remained the same. Rep. Holland and several others stated that the raise is long overdue and just $500 a year would not be sufficient. A motion to table this amendment was raised because several House members argued that the final numbers of the raise would be decided in conference, along with the rest of the state budget. The motion to table the amendment failed 50-55, and the amendment passed after a voice vote. The final vote for the entire bill was a bipartisan vote of 112-2, and the bill has been returned to the Senate.

Another highly debated bill that had floor action this week was Senate Bill 2116. The bill would prohibit an abortion of an unborn fetus with a detectable heartbeat. If enacted, the law would be one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the United States. The House passed a similar bill earlier this session ( House Bill 732), but the bill died on the Senate calendar. Senate Bill 2116 passed as amended with a vote of 78-37 and has been returned to the Senate.

Senate Bill 2716 would amend the state's Landlord Tenant Act to remove the grace period tenants who are behind on rent had been given before being evicted. Proponents of the bill argued that landlords are losing money and the elimination of the grace period would make the eviction process smoother. I voted no because I felt that the bill was unfair to lower income tenants who are already struggling to make ends meet and that the grace period offers them a cushion to figure things out. The bill passed 72-40.

Senate Bill 2892 would allow community hospitals around the state to begin servicing areas that are outside the State of Mississippi . After examining the bill, I perceived funds could leave Mississippi for other states. I don't want any resources to leave our state if we can help it. The bill was amended in the House Public Health and Human Services Committee to give further clarification. SB 2892 passed as amended 78-28 and has been returned to the Senate.

Additionally, here are a few other bills that might be of interest:

Mississippi Telephone Solicitation Act - Senate Bill 2821

Caller ID Anti-Spoofing Act - Senate Bill 2744

MS Rural Physicians Scholarship Program - Senate Bill 2524

The House approved a number of appropriations bills from the Senate this week. These bills are budgets for various state agencies, including the Veterans Affairs Board, the Department of Banking and Consumer Finance, the Board of Veterinary Examiners and the Department of Employment Security. Most of these bills were brought up and voted on in a block to speed the process along. All budgets include reverse repealers, ensuring that a bill will go to a conference committee.

The calendar also included several House bills that were passed earlier in the session, sent to the Senate, and returned back to the House. With this process, the Representatives will vote on whether to concur with the changes the Senate made, or to invite conference for possible further revisions before becoming law or dying.
Senate District 22 Redrawn

In February, it was determined that Senate District 22 as drawn  diluted the power of the black vote  in that area of the state, writing that the district does not afford the plaintiffs an equal opportunity to participate in the political processes and to elect candidates of their choice. State Senate District 22 currently covers six counties in the Delta and central Mississippi. The district is irregularly-shaped, with a wide center and two narrow arms, one that reaches north past Cleveland and another that reaches into Madison County, ending at the Barnett Reservoir. The distance between the two points is approximately 102 miles. Mississippi, which has 52 senate districts, is approximately 320 miles top to bottom. Click Here to read full story.
Wicker Voted against Border Wall

"I have serious reservations as to what the Emergency Declaration might do to the Constitutional principle of checks and balances," U.S. Senator Roger Wicker said.  Please Click Here to read full article.
Quote of the Week

"In my humble opinion, there is no group of people in this state more important than the professional educators that teach our children and our grandchildren," Rep. Steve Holland said on the House floor. "So bah humbug on $500 dollars a year. Y'all ought to be ashamed if you vote for it." Click Here to listen to a snippet of his floor debate that pushed for a higher teacher pay raise.
Flu Like Illnesses

As of March 2, rates of flu-like illness reported by the state's surveillance system fell sharply for the second week in a row. While rates will likely be elevated for a few more weeks, March typically brings the end of flu season. For the 2018-2019 season, the Mississippi State Department of Health investigated 50 outbreaks of flu among groups across the state, and reported one pediatric death from flu in December. Nationally, 64 pediatric flu deaths (occurring in those younger than 18) were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
How to Contact Legislators

Please email your Representatives and Senators via group email at the following addresses: or

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    Representative Abe M. Hudson, Jr. |