- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Recent editorials from Mississippi newspapers:

___

Oct. 30

The Sun Herald on solar power:

Last year, renewable electricity capacity - solar, wind and the like - overtook coal in a worldwide survey by the International Energy Agency.

The IEA said it expects renewable capacity growth to accelerate and it sees the U.S. among the leaders in that expansion.

Policy changes and falling prices are fueling that conversion.

For instance, the agency says policy uncertainty is slowing the expansion in the European Union.

That used to be the case in Mississippi as well. The state lacked a net metering program to govern the sale back to the utility of excess power produced by solar panels on a home.

Late last year, the Public Service Commission OK’d a general net metering program and is working with utilities on specific procedures and measures.

Mississippi Power is the one of the first to have those procedures. And judging from the crowd at the Mississippi Solar Energy Forum earlier this month, there is considerable interest in taking advantage of it.

Louie Miller, state director for the Sierra Club, said more than 200 people came to find out about solar power.

That’s good news for the planet. The PSC, the Sierra Club and Mississippi Power made this happen and we thank them for working out a net metering solution.

Mississippi Power’s parent company knows solar power is a good deal. It’s investing in it as another way to diversify its energy portfolio.

And saving 40 percent or more on a monthly utility bill would be sweet. But the initial investment required to make that happen is pretty steep and a switch to solar energy isn’t for everyone.

Our advice to the homeowner or business owner considering solar power: Do your homework. The Sierra Club said the new rule will cause a “blossoming” of solar-power companies. As with any emerging industry, not all companies will be created equal.

Talk to people you know who have experience with solar. Consult the Sierra Club and others who can hook you up with the expertise to make the right choice.

We know the club trusts Sun Pro, a Louisiana company that installs solar panels on homes. After all, it invited the firm to the forum.

And work with Mississippi Power if that’s where you get your electricity. The utility will be, more or less, your partner. It has detailed online resources that can help answer a lot of questions. The PSC (www.psc.state.ms.us) also has a lot of expertise.

They can also show you ways to save on your power bill even if you don’t switch to solar. The best part is you don’t have to be a Mississippi Power customer to use its site to learn about renewable energy.

There are federal tax credits available, as well, to help with the cost.

So as you can see, there are a lot of variables to be considered. Don’t go it alone.

Online: http://www.sunherald.com/

___

Nov. 1

The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal on sexual assault prevention on college campuses:

Sexual assaults on college campuses sadly demand headlines and coverage virtually every day in some part of our nation, and the crimes’ prevalence requires comprehensive action.

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center, which researches and catalogues assault statistics involving women and men, sheds light on a disturbing national situation:

. One in 5 women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college.

. More than 90 percent of sexual assault victims on college campuses do not report the assault.

. 63.3 percent of men at one university who self-reported acts qualifying as rape or attempted rape admitted to committing repeat offenses.

At Ole Miss, the Associated Student Body, the campus-wide student government, and Rebels Against Sexual Assault have partnered for an almost week-long emphasis on prevention, reporting and identifying both assailants and victims.

The emphasis is dubbed “It’s On Us Week of Action” to raise awareness about the prevalence of sexual assault on college campuses throughout the country.

Through Thursday, the groups will host a pledge drive at the Ole Miss Student Union encouraging students, faculty and staff to take a pledge to end sexual assault at itsonus.org.

Besides the pledge drive, several other events are scheduled across campus:

. Today: 6:30 p.m., Bishop Hall, Room 209 - The campus community is invited to a lecture by guest speaker Chardonnay Madkins from End Rape on Campus.

. Wednesday: 6:30 p.m., Farley Hall, Room 202 - The campus community is invited to a screening of the CNN documentary “The Hunting Ground,” followed by a panel discussion of sexual assault prevention practices and resources for survivors on campus.

. Thursday: 7:30 p.m., Ole Miss Student Union plaza - RASA and the ASB will host a 3-K Glow Run.

. Friday: 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Ole Miss Student Union - RASA and the ASB will display T-shirts designed as part of The Clothesline Project, a campaign that allows survivors of sexual violence to anonymously share their story and empower others to do the same. Noon, Lyceum Circle - RASA and the Sarah Isom Center for Women and Gender Studies invite the community to gather for a Sexual Assault Awareness Rally.

In terms of reported cases, the assault total at UM is relatively small: 34 for the university and Lafayette County in the most recent year.

However, UM students and officials believe the national statistic for unreported assaults, 88 percent, is accurate on the Oxford campus.

Assault, which is non-consensual, is a crime regardless of age and should be met with punitive consequences.

The University of Mississippi is taking some of the actions necessary for prevention and reporting.

Online: https://djournal.com/

___

Nov. 1

The Greenwood Commonwealth on the sentencing of Chris Epps:

It is hard to fathom why it’s taking so long to sentence Mississippi’s crooked former Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps.

This week, U.S. District Judge Henry Wingate again postponed Epps’ sentencing date, pushing it to late May next year - which will be 15 months after Epps entered a plea bargain in a scandal that accuses him of pocketing at least $1.4 million in bribes and kickbacks from those doing business with the Department of Corrections.

Initially, the delay was because Epps was helping prosecutors make their cases against the individuals who paid him off. Now, supposedly it’s because the defense and prosecutors are haggling over the net value of the loss to the state in the $800 million worth of bribery-tainted prison contracts.

Although the math may be a little complicated, it shouldn’t be taking this much time. The longer this runs, the more it fuels the suspicion that Epps, the mastermind of the graft, will get off easy.

Online: http://www.gwcommonwealth.com/

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide