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Magnolia Mornings: March 19, 2024

Magnolia Mornings: March 19, 2024

By: Magnolia Tribune - March 19, 2024

Magnolia morning
  • Important state and national stories, market and business news, sports and entertainment, delivered in quick-hit fashion to start your day informed.

In Mississippi

1. Over $84M in state, federal assistance provided since March 2023 MS tornadoes

A bus passes debris on Saturday, March 25, 2023 in Silver City, Miss. Emergency officials in Mississippi say several people have been killed by tornadoes that tore through the state on Friday night, destroying buildings and knocking out power as severe weather produced hail the size of golf balls moved through several southern states. (AP Photo/Michael Goldberg)

WJTV reports that nearly one year after tornadoes caused damage across Mississippi on March 24-5, 2023, more than $84.9 million in state and federal assistance has been provided to survivors.

“The funds include grants from FEMA and the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) through the Individual Assistance and Public Assistance Programs, and low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA),” WJTV noted. “As of March 15, 2024, more than $13.1 million in FEMA grants have been approved for renters and homeowners in Carroll, Humphreys, Monroe, Montgomery, Panola and Sharkey counties.”

2. Groundbreaking on new Genuine MS Ag Market today

The public is invited to attend the officially groundbreaking for the new Genuine Mississippi Agricultural Market Complex on Tuesday, March 19, at 10:00 a.m. off Highway 18 East in Brandon.

Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson along with Rankin County and City of Brandon officials will mark the new venture and celebrate National Agriculture Day.

Announced earlier this year, the Genuine Mississippi Market Complex will be located on Mississippi Highway 18 near the front door of future economic development for Rankin County. The Market Complex will be developed by the private sector and will feature the full farm-to-table experience for retail consumers whether shopping for fresh farm-raised produce in season, high quality meat products, or frozen or dried products for cooking at home.  The Market Complex will also be the first of its kind local food storage, processing and distribution hub for the State of Mississippi.

National News & Foreign Policy

1. Trump attorneys say the former President is facing “insurmountable difficulties” in obtaining $464M bond

Donald Trump in Manhattan court for arraignment.
Former President Donald Trump sits at the defense table with his legal team in a Manhattan court, Tuesday, April 4, 2023, in New York. Trump is appearing in court on charges related to falsifying business records in a hush money investigation, the first president ever to be charged with a crime. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool)

ABC News reported Monday that former President Donald Trump’s attorneys said Monday in a new appellate court filing that Trump is facing “insurmountable difficulties” in obtaining a bond to satisfy the $464 million civil fraud judgment. It could require him to use real estate as collateral.

“Judge Arthur Engoron in February ordered Trump to pay $464 million in disgorgement and interest after holding him liable for doing a decade’s worth of business with fraudulent financial statements that overvalued his real estate holdings and hyped his wealth,” ABC News reported. “Trump was also barred from leading any New York company for three years. His sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump were also fined $4 million apiece and barred for two years.”

ABC News also noted that Trump’s attorneys, who have called the judgment “unconstitutionally excessive,” asked an appellate court again on Monday to allow Trump to secure a bond in a lesser amount.

2. NYT’s take on SCOTUS hearing on government contact with social media companies

The New York Times reported on Monday that a majority of the justices on the U.S. Supreme Court appeared convinced that government officials should be able to try to persuade private companies, whether news organizations or tech platforms, not to publish information so long as the requests are not backed by coercive threats.

“Justices Brett M. Kavanaugh and Elena Kagan, both former White House lawyers, said interactions between administration officials and news outlets provided a valuable analogy. Efforts by officials to influence coverage are, they said, part of a valuable dialogue that is not prohibited by the First Amendment,” NYT reported after Monday’s hearing at the high court. “Members of the court also raised questions about whether the plaintiffs — Missouri and Louisiana, along with five individuals — had suffered the kind of injury that gave them standing to sue. They also suggested that a broad injunction prohibiting contacts between many officials and the platforms was not a proper remedy in any event.”

Sports & Entertainment

1. Big 3 back in Baseball America Top 25

After big weekend wins to open conference play, Mississippi’s Big 3 are back in Baseball America’s Top 25 poll this week.

Mississippi State came in at No. 16 while Ole Miss is No. 17. Southern Miss rounds out the bunch at No. 25.

Ole Miss and Southern Miss play each other on Tuesday while State hosts Memphis.

2. Sports Illustrated back in operation

The Associated Press is reporting that Sports Illustrated will continue operations after new publisher, Minute Media, took over this week.

“Minute Media took over on Monday after reaching a licensing agreement with Authentic Brands Group. On Jan. 19, Authentic announced that it was revoking The Arena Group’s publishing license after Arena failed to make a quarterly payment,” the AP reported, adding, “Minute Media will begin meeting with SI employees over the next couple of weeks as it determines how much of the staff it will retain, according to a person with knowledge of the transition.”

Markets & Business

1. Homebuilders feeling more confident

CNBC reports that U.S. homebuilders are feeling more confident about their businesses than they have since last summer, as they see better demand despite stubbornly high mortgage rates.

“Homebuilder sentiment rose 3 points in March to 51 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. The reading gained for the fourth-straight month, hitting its highest level since July,” CNBC reported. “Sentiment also moved into positive territory for the first time since July.”

CNBC also noted that mortgage rates came down in the first week of March, only to shoot back up in the second week.

“The average rate on the popular 30-year fixed mortgage has hovered around 7% since early February,” they reported.

2. AstraZeneca capping inhaler cost at $35

AstraZeneca is capping out-of-pocket costs for inhalers and related medication at no more than $35 per month, the drugmaker announced Monday as reported by the Washington Post.

“TheBritain based pharma giant said the expanded savings are intended to help vulnerable patients with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, especially those without health insurance. The price cap takes effect June 1,” the Post reported.

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Magnolia Tribune

This article was produced by Magnolia Tribune staff.