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Mississippi Health Department seeks small budget increase

After two years of reductions, the Mississippi State Department of Health is requesting a modest budget increase for the coming year.

Posted: Jan 11, 2018 1:15 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — After two years of reductions, the Mississippi State Department of Health is requesting a modest budget increase for the coming year.

The state health officer, Dr. Mary Currier, told senators Wednesday that the department has cut expenses by going from nine administrative districts to three. Offices in Tupelo, Jackson and Gulfport oversee the staffing and activities of Health Department clinics in multiple counties. Currier said the change has made management difficult and she would like to have six districts.

The state-supported part of the Health Department budget was $62 million last year and is $57 million this year.

An early proposal by top budget writers would give the department a small reduction for the year that starts July 1, but Currier is requesting an increase of $3.4 million. About $1.5 million of that would be for district staff and offices, $650,000 would be to deal with syphilis and HIV in the Jackson metro area, and nearly $1.7 million would be to track tuberculosis cases statewide to try to curb the spread of the disease.

"You don't want TB in institutions. You don't want TB in schools. You don't want TB in nursing homes," Currier said.

Senate Appropriations Chairman Eugene "Buck" Clarke, a Republican from Hollandale, said he will consider the request.

"I'd like to find them some money," Clarke said. "They got cut deeply in the last two years."

Legislators face a deadline in late March to write an overall $6 billion state budget for the coming year.

The Health Department is also asking lawmakers to consider authorizing $3.4 million in bonds to fund a loan program for improvements to rural water systems. Currier said for every $1 Mississippi would put into the program, the federal government would put $5.

Republican Sen. Angela Hill of Picayune said the rural water loan program would help the people she represents.

"That is just an important thing we definitely need to focus on trying to fund," Hill said.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 15229

Reported Deaths: 723
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds99925
Lauderdale73561
Madison72023
Scott65012
Neshoba63038
Jones59825
Forrest55338
DeSoto5337
Rankin4217
Leake42112
Holmes39728
Copiah3104
Jackson30513
Attala29216
Yazoo2734
Newton2714
Leflore25831
Harrison2577
Lincoln25628
Monroe25525
Lamar2355
Oktibbeha23512
Lowndes2119
Pearl River20931
Pike20211
Adams19615
Noxubee1856
Wayne1771
Warren1719
Washington1687
Covington1652
Bolivar16011
Jasper1574
Smith15011
Lee1496
Kemper14411
Clarke14318
Chickasaw13312
Lafayette1314
Coahoma1214
Carroll11711
Marion1159
Clay1124
Winston1121
Claiborne1112
Lawrence1021
Simpson1010
Yalobusha905
Hancock9011
Tate891
Grenada893
Wilkinson889
Itawamba877
Union835
Marshall833
Montgomery831
Sunflower813
Jefferson Davis772
Tippah7311
Panola703
Webster691
Calhoun644
Humphreys607
Amite601
Walthall550
Tunica543
Prentiss523
Perry503
Choctaw432
Jefferson421
Tishomingo320
Pontotoc323
Stone300
Franklin282
Tallahatchie271
Quitman260
George251
Alcorn171
Benton150
Greene121
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 17359

Reported Deaths: 618
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2191115
Jefferson1780102
Montgomery163238
Tuscaloosa73814
Marshall6879
Franklin5457
Lee54033
Shelby50319
Tallapoosa42364
Butler40217
Chambers35325
Walker3442
Elmore3398
Madison3274
Baldwin2839
Dallas2603
Morgan2511
Etowah24811
DeKalb2433
Lowndes23812
Coffee2291
Sumter2206
Autauga2164
Houston2094
Bullock2034
Pike1980
Colbert1782
Russell1670
Marengo1636
Lauderdale1612
Hale1598
Calhoun1543
Choctaw1518
Barbour1501
Wilcox1447
Clarke1422
Cullman1260
Randolph1257
Marion12111
St. Clair1181
Pickens1114
Dale1100
Talladega1093
Chilton1001
Limestone940
Greene944
Winston880
Covington771
Jackson772
Crenshaw763
Macon754
Henry742
Bibb721
Washington686
Blount611
Escambia573
Lawrence480
Geneva400
Conecuh391
Coosa381
Monroe372
Perry370
Cherokee373
Clay272
Lamar230
Fayette150
Cleburne141
Unassigned00
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