Several leadership roles shuffled in Mississippi Senate

Published 7:05 am Monday, November 9, 2020

Several members of the Mississippi Senate are receiving new leadership roles, weeks ahead of the next legislative session that begins in January.

Republican Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann announced some new committee chairmen and vice chairmen last week. The changes are being made after one senator resigned to take another job and another one resigned because of health concerns.

Committee leaders have influence over which bills live or die. The changes are being made before the second year of a four-year term. Among them:

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Republican Sen. Brice Wiggins of Pascagoula is the new chairman of the Judiciary A Committee. That chairmanship had been held by Republican Sen. Sally Doty of Brookhaven. She resigned in mid-July after the governor nominated her as director of the state Public Utilities Staff, which analyzes proposals and provides advice to the Public Service Commission’s three elected members.

Republican Sen. Joey Fillingane of Sumrall replaces Wiggins as chairman of the Judiciary B Committee.
Republican Sen. Jenifer Branning of Philadelphia replaces Fillingane as chairman of the Transportation Committee.

Republican Sen. Jeff Tate of Meridian replaces Branning as chairman of the Elections Committee. Tate had been vice chairman of the committee. That role goes to Democratic Sen. Hob Bryan of Amory.

Democratic Sen. Derrick Simmons of Greenville is the new chairman of the Municipalities Committee. The role was previously held by Republican Sen. Gary Jackson of French Camp, who resigned because of his health.