Monday, January 31
Best of Jackson 2022: Food and Drink
If this year’s Best of Jackson picks are any indication, Jacksonians are never afraid to expand their palates when the moment calls for it, but they certainly can have their tried-and-true fan favorites, too.
Best of Jackson 2022: People
We at the Jackson Free Press celebrate the individuals who bring a little something extra with them week-in and week-out to make our beloved city shine.
Mississippi Orders Competency Hearing on Execution Request
The Mississippi Supreme Court is ordering a trial court judge to determine if a Mississippi death row inmate truly wants to request an execution date and if the inmate is mentally competent to waive his appeals in the case.
Jackson Law Officers Say They Need Help to Cut Violent Crime
Law officers, community leaders, and residents are meeting to discuss ways of curbing Jackson’s soaring crime rate.
Official: COVID Strain on Mississippi Health System High
Staff at a north Mississippi health system is experiencing more stress now than at any other time during the pandemic, officials said.
Fossil Road Show, S.T.E.M., Leaves and Trees, UNA VOCE and County Cajun Seafood Market
The Mississippi Museum of Natural Science will host a Fossil Road Show on Saturday, March 5, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Friday, January 28
What's Happening in Jackson: Weekend Events – Jan. 28-30
Immigrant Alliance for Justice & Equity of Mississippi is hosting a LGBTQIA+ Wellness Fair on Sunday, Jan. 30, at 510 George St. in Jackson beginning at noon.
This Monday, Jan. 24, MSU star and leading scorer in the SEC Rickea Jackson announced she was entering the NCAA Transfer Portal. Jackson was averaging 20.3 points and 6.8 rebounds in the 15 games she appeared in this season.
Strong Arms of JXN: Credible Messengers Use Experiences to Prevent Violence
John Knight, Terun Moore and Benny Ivey have all experienced life in prison and now mentor criminal-justice-system-involved young people as credible messengers with the Strong Arms of JXN.
Mississippi Bill Sets Religious Exemption on COVID Vaccine
Mississippi government entities could not withhold services or refuse jobs to people who choose not to get vaccinated against COVID-19 under a bill that passed the Republican-controlled state House on Thursday.
Thursday, January 27
Reeve’s State of The State Touts Accomplishments Amid Troubles
Gov. Tate Reeves gave his annual State of the State speech this Tuesday, outlining his administration’s accomplishments over the last year and establishing his priorities for 2022.
Ridgeland Mayor Demands LGBTQ+ Book Purge, Threatens Library Funding
Ridgeland Mayor Gene McGee is withholding $110,000 of funding from the Madison County Library System allegedly on the basis of his personal religious beliefs, with library officials stating that he has demanded that the system initiate a purge of LGBTQ+ books before his office releases the money.
Medical Marijuana Bill Passes, Heads to Mississipi Governor
Mississippi lawmakers are sending their governor a bill that would create a medical marijuana program for people with serious medical conditions.
Mississippi Capital City Struggles With Aging Water System
The unreliable water system in Mississippi's capital city causes problems several times a year at Styles of Essence hair salon, where water service can suddenly get cut off as workers repair broken pipes nearby.
Wednesday, January 26
‘Nobody Should be Under the Gun’: Jackson Council Rejects Third Garbage Contract
Only 10 weeks to the end of the City of Jackson’s emergency garbage-disposal contract with Waste Management Inc., the Jackson City Council rejected Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba’s request to approve Richard’s Disposal as the capital-city vendor this week.
Mississippi Close to Final Vote on Medical Marijuana Bill
Mississippi lawmakers are poised to take final votes Wednesday on creating a medical marijuana program for people with serious medical conditions, negotiators said Tuesday.
EPA Acts on Environmental Justice in 3 Gulf Coast States
The Environmental Protection Agency announced a series of enforcement actions Wednesday to address air pollution, unsafe drinking water and other problems afflicting minority communities in three Gulf Coast states, following a “Journey to Justice” tour by Administrator Michael Regan last fall.
Getty Images and MDE Grants at JSU and USM Spring 2022 University Forum
Jackson State University recently announced that it is one of four recipients of the inaugural Getty Images Photo Archive Grant for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, an initiative aimed at preserving and amplifying the visual history of historically Black colleges and universities.
Tuesday, January 25
Josiah Sampson III
Jackson State University President Thomas Hudson recently appointed Josiah Sampson III as the university's new vice president for Enrollment Management, effective Jan. 18.
CDC Study Examines Potential Link Between COVID-19 and Pediatric Diabetes, As Experts Warned
Dr. Jessica Lilley and other experts worry that long-term damage from COVID-19 in children may be entirely at odds with popular perception of the virus as “mild.” Now, it seems the Centers for Disease Control and other medical experts are finally catching up.
JPS Forced Into Virtual Classes Amid City Water Woes
Water pressure issues stemming from recent cold weather mean that numerous Jackson Public School locations had to switch to all-virtual learning today, another issue in a long line of problems plaguing the city due to an aging water infrastructure.
Mississippi Working on Plans for Pandemic Relief Money
Mississippi senators are taking the first steps toward spending some of the $1.8 billion the state is receiving from the federal government for pandemic relief.
Mississippi Governor Giving State of State Speech Outdoors
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves will discuss his policy priorities during his State of the State address.
Monday, January 24
Highball Lanes, LaCour Kitchen and Bar and BGCCM Youth Basketball League
Highball Lanes, a combination creole restaurant and 10-lane bowling alley with an attached bar in Jackson's Fondren neighborhood, opened for business with limited hours on Wednesday, Jan. 19.
‘He Was a Good Son’: COVID-19 Amplified Jackson Violence, Inequities for Black Families
Tramaine Green, 26, was the oldest of six siblings, and his mother describes him as very protective of anyone he cared about.
Black Mississippi Senators Protest Vote on Race Theory Bill
Black lawmakers walked out in protest Friday and withheld their votes as the Mississippi Senate passed a bill that would ban schools from teaching critical race theory.
Two Teacher Pay Raise Proposals Alive at Mississippi Capitol
The Mississippi Senate voted Friday to increase teachers' pay, days after the House approved a separate proposal.
Mississippi Governor Signs Bill for Congressional Remap
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves on Monday signed a bill that redraws the boundaries of the state's four congressional districts to account for changes in population.
Friday, January 21
Mental Health Experts: Raise Age of Children Locked in Hinds Juvenile Justice Center
Children at the Henley-Young Juvenile Justice Center were abused, a lawsuit filed in 2011 alleged, which led to a federal consent decree forcing Hinds County to make changes to its operations.
USM Merit Health Partnership, JSU Carnegie Classification and MSU "Old Main" Documentary
The University of Southern Mississippi’s College of Nursing and Health Professions is partnering with Merit Health Wesley in Hattiesburg to add two of the hospital’s nurses to the University’s clinical teaching faculty during the spring 2022 semester.
Mississippi: Online and In-Person Class OK Amid Virus Surge
Mississippi schools are allowed to use a combination of in-person and online classes to try to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Mississippi House OKs Bill on Equal Pay for Women and Men
Mississippi employers would be required to pay women and men the same amount of money for the same work, under a bill that passed the state House on Thursday.
Bill Banning Critical Race Theory Goes to Mississippi Senate
A Mississippi Senate committee on Thursday advanced a bill that would ban schools from teaching critical race theory, even though the state superintendent of education has said the theory is not being taught in schools and legislators have offered no evidence to show it is.
Thursday, January 20
More Restrictive Medical Marijuana Program Passes House
Mississippi’s beleaguered medical marijuana program moved closer to completion this week, after the Mississippi House of Representatives voted 104-14 to pass a revision of the state Senate’s more restrictive version of the program.
Tameshia Shelton Is Serving Life for a Murder, But Could the Death Have Been Suicide?
A hearing continues Tuesday to determine if a Clay County woman named Tameshia Shelton, serving a life sentence for the death of her sister’s boyfriend, will get a new trial.
Makai Polk Enters 2022 NFL Draft
Mississippi State University is losing its record breaking wide receiver after just one season with the program. Redshirt sophomore wide out Makai Polk has announced he will enter the 2022 NFL Draft.
Former County Official Faces Embezzlement, Fraud Charges
Agents from State Auditor Shad White's office arrested Gregory Sanford, a former emergency manager for Covington County, following his indictment for fraud and embezzlement.
Wednesday, January 19
Mississippi Entertainment Museum Taps 5 for Hall of Fame
Three musicians and two writers will be inducted into the hall of fame at the Mississippi Arts + Entertainment Experience.
Mississippi City Names Street for Blues Artist Bobby Rush
Mississippi's capital is renaming Ellis Avenue to Bobby Rush Boulevard in honor of a Grammy-winning blues singer who lives in the city.
Ignite the Night, Junior League Jumble, and Mississippi Gem and Mineral Show
The Mississippi Children's Museum will host its annual "Ignite the Night" fundraiser from 7 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 12.
Lost in the ‘Dead Zone’: Thousands Languish in Mississippi Jail Without Lawyers
A jury rendered a not-guilty verdict for Duane Lake, 35, for a capital-murder allegation against him in November 2021. He had been in jail since 2015 and got his freedom after the verdict. The MacArthur Justice Center at the University of Mississippi School of Law says his story highlights Mississippi inmates' plight in county jails without legal representation.
Tuesday, January 18
COVID-19 Cases Continue to Climb as Healthcare Infrastructure Suffers
Mississippi continues to witness climbing COVID-19 numbers into the new year, with the Mississippi State Department of Health reporting another set of record-breaking case reports at 22,456 infections over this weekend alone.
‘We Back Laughing’: RaDeazy Herrin Drive Brings Comedy to Picayune
After a three-month hiatus, Herrin Drive Entertainment of Picayune, Miss., will host the “We Back Laughing” comedy show on Saturday, Jan. 15, 2022, as a means of celebrating the new year and healing through laughter.
Mississippi College Faculty Member Earns Book Award
When Jackson police found a body lying near a children’s playground at Battlefield Park one rainy March day in 2021, it was the catalyst for a drive to change the area’s perception.
Jackson Native Releases Trivia App for Mississippi Residents
When Jackson native Warn Wilson Jr. decided to make a trivia game, he knew he wanted to include questions about his hometown and test the knowledge of residents and people with ties to the city.
Friday, January 14
With ICUs Full, MSDH Restarts System of Care
Dr. LouAnn Woodward, vice chancellor and dean of the University of Mississippi Medical Center, addressed the media Tuesday in a press event both familiar and dire, another warning from the state’s flagship hospital in the depths of a wave of COVID-19.
JSU NSF Grant, MSU CYBERCOM Partnership and USM Center for Digital Humanities
The National Science Foundation recently gave Jackson State University political science professor D’Andra Orey a $509,000 multi-year grant for research exploring the intersection of race, exposure to trauma and politics on urban residents compared to individuals residing in rural areas.
Mississippi Supreme Court Extends Emergency COVID-19 Order
An emergency order extending the time for COVID-19 safeguards in all courts and giving judges discretion to postpone jury trials scheduled through Jan. 28 has been issued by Mississippi Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike Randolph.
Medical Marijuana Advances With Mississippi Senate Vote
Mississippi senators voted Thursday to advance a bill that would create a medical marijuana program, sending it to the House for more work.
Thursday, January 13
Poor People’s Campaign Offers Free COVID-19 Testing as Cases Rise
COVID-19 infections continue to climb across the state, with the Mississippi State Department of Health reporting 8,204 new cases today along with 26 fatalities and continually increasing outbreaks across the state’s long-term care facilities.
The University of Mississippi enjoyed its first 10-win regular season in school history. Head coach Lane Kiffin brought his high-powered offense to Oxford and retooled the defense in just this second season.
Thousands Jailed Long Periods Before Trial in Mississippi
Thousands of people in Mississippi continue to be jailed for long periods while waiting to go on trial because they are too poor to afford bail, judges may deny bail altogether or public defenders might not be available when they're needed, according to a new report from a group that advocates for the rights of the incarcerated.
Mississippi Senate OKs Revisions to 4 US House Districts
The Republican-controlled Mississippi Senate on Wednesday passed a plan to redraw the state’s four congressional districts, sending it to Gov. Tate Reeves for his expected approval.
Medical Marijuana Proposal Moves to Mississippi Senate
A bill to create a medical marijuana program is headed for debate in the Mississippi Senate in coming days.
Wednesday, January 12
City Council Votes on 2022 Legislative Agenda, Wants Land Bank, Water-Sewer Debt Forgiveness Extension
On Tuesday, Jan. 11, Jackson City Council President and Ward 7 Councilwoman Virgi Lindsay called a special city council meeting for members to vote on six resolutions on the City's legislative agenda for 2022.
Talamieka Brice’s Film Honors Her Children, Faces Brutal History of Race Violence
Talamieka Brice wrote, directed and illustrated “A Mother’s Journey,” a film that follows her process in addressing traumas of the past in a quest to seek healing.
Mississippi Sets Patient Transfer Order Amid COVID-19 Surge
The Mississippi Health Department on Tuesday ordered all hospitals in the state to allow the transfer of critically ill patients, an effort to help people in rural areas receive care as the state continues to see a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases.
Separate Plans Propose Raises for Mississippi Teachers
The Mississippi House and Senate are pushing forward with separate plans to give pay raises to teachers. The House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday passed House Bill 530, and the whole House could debate the bill in coming days.
Mississippi House Panel OKs Bill to Phase Out Income Tax
The Mississippi House is working on a proposal to phase out the state income tax, reduce the sales tax on groceries and increase the sales tax on many other items.
Mississippi Senate Set to Vote on Revamped U.S. House Map
The Mississippi Senate on Wednesday is expected to approve a plan to redraw the state’s four congressional districts.
Tuesday, January 11
Mayor Lumumba Calls for Increased COVID-19 Vaccinations amid Early 2022 Surge
Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba called for increased vaccination among Jackson residents—especially those most vulnerable, such as the elderly—this week, citing high case numbers in Hinds County.
The Mississippi Public Health Association named Tanya Funchess, an assistant professor of public health at the University of Southern Mississippi, as president-elect for the organization in November 2021.
Mississippi Senate Leaders Propose Teacher Pay Increase
Mississippi Senate leaders are proposing a plan to increase teachers' pay an average of $4,700 over two years to try to move the state away from its perpetually low national ranking for educators' salaries.
Mississippi Tax Revenue Jumps During 1st Half of Budget Year
Mississippi government collected more money during the first half of this budget year than it did during the same period a year earlier.
Monday, January 10
Who Is the Hinds County Board of Supervisors’ President?
The question regarding who will chair the Hinds County Board of Supervisors meeting next week, Monday, Jan. 17, remains unclear as two supervisors both claim to be the president—District 2 Supervisor David Archie and District 3 Supervisor Credell Calhoun.
Family Fun Science Day and Game Changers at the Science Museum, Oops! All Vegan Restaurant
The Mississippi Museum of Natural Science is hosting a Family Fun Science Day event on Saturday, Jan. 15, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Doc: Most Mississippi Nursing Homes Have COVID Outbreaks
There are active COVID-19 outbreaks in 91% of Mississippi's nursing homes, mostly involving staff, a top health official said Friday, as the omicron variant of the virus continues to surge.
Analysis: Redistricting Not as Tough as It Was Two Decades Ago
Mississippi’s current congressional redistricting effort is much less contentious than the effort was 20 years ago, when the state dropped from five U.S. House seats to four.
Friday, January 7
JSU COVID-19 Protocols, MSU Outstanding Achievement Awards and USM MLK Prayer Breakfast
Due to a recent increase in COVID-19 cases, particularly the omicron variant, Jackson State University recently announced new health and safety protocols for the upcoming spring 2022 semester.
Seeking Solutions to Protect Mississippi Children from Lead Poisoning
Though cases of lead poisoning have been declining over decades in the United States, more still needs to be done. It is a serious threat to children’s futures and health.
Mississippi House OKs Congressional Remap Amid Objections
The Republican-controlled Mississippi House on Thursday approved a plan to redraw the state's four congressional districts.
Thursday, January 6
COVID-19 Breaks Highest Case Total Twice This Week
For the second day in a row this week, the Mississippi State Department of Health reported a record number of COVID-19 cases throughout the state. At 7,079 new infections, the number tops what was only yesterday the previous record at 6,592 cases.
Auditor Targets Anti-Racism Books in Mississippi Libraries: ‘A Cancer On Our Society’
Mississippi State Auditor Shad White is endorsing proposed legislation to ban educators from teaching “anti-racist” ideas in schools and accused libraries in the state of stocking “racist” books that criticize “whiteness.”
Mississippi House Poised to Vote on Congressional Remapping
The Republican-controlled Mississippi House is expected to vote Thursday on a plan to redraw the state's four congressional districts.
Mississippi Lieutenant Governor Tests Positive for COVID-19
Mississippi Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann has tested positive for COVID-19 after the opening day of a legislative session when Hosemann and many other people were walking around the Capitol without wearing masks.
Wednesday, January 5
JPS Starts In-Person Learning Tomorrow, Enhanced COVID-19 Protocol
Students at Jackson Public School will resume in-person learning tomorrow, Thursday, Jan. 6, with the district leadership sticking with the resumption plan announced in December amidst an uptick in COVID-19 cases.
Elayne Hayes Anthony
The Mississippi Association of Broadcasters recently named Elayne Anthony, chairwoman of the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at Jackson State University, as the next president of the Mississippi Association of Broadcasters.
Judge Orders Mississippi City to Allow Mosque Construction
A new federal court order says a Mississippi city must allow construction of a mosque, two months after the American Civil Liberties Union filed a discrimination lawsuit against the city on behalf of two Muslim men who want to develop the place of worship.
Tuesday, January 4
Mississippi Legislators Begin Session, Face Marijuana Debate
Mississippi legislators began their three-month session Tuesday, and the mother of a man with chronic medical problems implored them to create a medical marijuana program, despite objections from Gov. Tate Reeves.
MSDH Reports 17,000 COVID-19 Cases Over New Year’s Weekend
Both nationwide and across Mississippi, the COVID-19 omicron variant has continued to spread through New Year’s weekend.
The University of Mississippi women’s basketball team is off to a red-hot start this season. The Rebels dropped the opening game of the season and haven’t lost a game since. UM is off to a 13-1 start coming out of conference play.
Remembering Mississippi Children Who Lost Their Lives to COVID-19
Since the school year started in August, almost 23,000 students have tested positive for COVID-19, along with more than 4,000 teachers and staff. Schools have seen a total of 1,172 outbreaks in that time, the Mississippi State Department of Health reported.
Monday, January 3
#StandAgainstHate Concert, Future Stars of the Stage and Shen Yun
The #StandAgainstHate Old School Hip Hop Reunion will take place on Saturday, Jan. 15, at the Mississippi Coliseum after being rescheduled from August 2021 due to COVID-19 concerns.
City Engineer: Despite Improvements, Severe Winter Storm Could Wreak Havoc
February 2022 will mark Jackson's first anniversary of two back-to-back winter storms, which jeopardized the ability of many among the city’s more than 150,000 residents to get water.
Judge Blocks COVID Vaccine Mandate for Head Start Program
President Joe Biden cannot require teachers in the Head Start early education program to be vaccinated against COVID-19, a Louisiana federal judge ruled Saturday, handing a victory to 24 states that had sued the federal government.
Griffis Beginning 8-Year Term on Mississippi Supreme Court
The Mississippi Supreme Court is holding a ceremony Monday for Justice Kenny Griffis to begin a new term of office.
Analysis: Mississippi Legislators Face Full Agenda in 2022
Mississippi legislators begin their three-month session on Tuesday with a clear idea of several issues that will come up for debate.