Nonprofits net support from tax dollars

Published 1:18 pm Monday, April 7, 2014

A bill allowing for nonprofit charities to be funded with public dollars from Warren County breezed to passage last week as the 2014 regular session wound down.

General funds will be tapped to subsidize seven agencies during the rest of fiscal 2014, with the total coming to $35,550, according to House Bill 1644. Seven more agencies whose mission is service will get $154,314.94 this year, bringing the total amount of nonprofit agency funding this year to $189,864.94, or just $15.06 less than last year’s funding.

The 14 organizations received between $3,000 and $10,000 less apiece than originally requested before this year’s budget was set in September.

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On the list for funding are Central Mississippi Prevention Services Inc., at $1,125; Mississippi Food Network, at $1,800; Triumph Ministries, at $11,250; Vicksburg Family Development Service Inc., at $4,500; Warren Washington Issaquena Sharkey Community Action Agency Inc., at $6,750; We Care Community Services Inc., at $5,625 and Women’s Restoration Shelter/Mountain of Faith Ministries, at $4,500.

In Mississippi, funding charities with public money is allowable only by an act of the Legislature. Such acts generally garner high support; votes for the bill, sponsored by Reps. Alex Monsour and Oscar Denton, were 110-6 in the House and 51-1 in the Senate.

Agencies that fall into a service category that don’t need specific legislation each year include, with this year’s amounts, the HIV Clinic, at $24,300; Vicksburg Child Abuse Prevention Center, at $16,350; the American Red Cross, at $6,000; the Veterans Service Center, at $22,680; Community Council, at $50,500; Haven House, at $27,000 and Vicksburg Warren County Chamber of Commerce, at $7,484.94.