Your Legislature faced some difficult decisions this week. With the inevitable appearance of COVID-19 in our state, we took unprecedented action to combat this virus. On Tuesday the House passed legislation to suspend the legislature and to grant certain authority to local and municipal governments to pay their employees once they were sent home. Unfortunately, the House held the measure and the Senate was unable to consider them until Wednesday. On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the Senate passed HB 1647 and House Concurrent Resolution 65 effectively suspending the 2020 Mississippi Legislative Session until at least April 1, 2020. Such action has not occurred since the times of the Civil War.
While addressing colleagues from the well, Senate President Pro Tempore Dean Kirby said the suspension was the best way to prevent possible infection of lawmakers and staff as the crowded Capitol could be a breeding ground for the virus. We are a strong state and strong nation. We shall not endeavor to allow any threat to bring us down. As we face this week of trials, we must continue to pray of our nation, our essential personnel, our first responders, and our medical professionals. Remember to follow the guidelines set forth by the CDC and Mississippi Department of Health. Additionally, remember to check out the information and the source of information.
Lastly, I’ll do everything that I can to pass along information to keep you updated. Governor Reeves took additional action to delay schools from returning until April 17th in an effort to keep the virus from spreading through our schools. As of the date of this article, the virus has been confirmed in Scott County and is expected to be confirmed in other counties. If you feel that you are infected, I encourage to seek out your healthcare professional. Drive through testing in certain locations across the State is now available. More information can be found at www.healthyms.com or 1-877-978-6453. As always, thank you for allowing me to serve you.