Small, but important bills sent to Governor’s desk

Published 7:00 am Saturday, March 25, 2017

Education has been a hot topic here in Mississippi as the legislature fights back and forth about school spending.

Yet, one bill has gotten green light this year. SB 2273 was recently sent to Gov. Phil Bryant for final approval.

The bill, written by Picayune’s own Sen. Angela Hill, strengthens requirements for cursive reading and writing in schools.

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Currently, Mississippi students are supposed to begin learning cursive in second grade, but the new law would require students to pass a proficiency test by fifth grade.

Previously, Hill expressed worries that many children are unable to read cursive, thereby rendering historic documents illegible.

It might seem like a small thing to pass this measure, but it’s a good step toward preserving our history.

While it is important to evolve education with new technology and new techniques, it’s also important remember the past.

Another bill requiring all passengers in a vehicle to wear their seatbelt, or pay a $25 fine, was also sent to the governor’s office this week.

Currently, only those in the front seat or those younger than 7-years-old are required to wear them. While many people voluntarily wear one even in the backseat, there are still those who don’t.

It has been proven time and again that seatbelts save lives, so why shouldn’t it be a requirement?

Yet even though it passed the Senate, 15 senators voted against it, including Pearl River County representative Sen. Mike Seymour.

Some news reports say those who vote against it believed it was government overreach, but ensuring the safety of citizens through speed limits and other safety standards have been in place for decades.

Those limitations are put in place to protect us, not inhibit a person’s freedoms.

These measures, as soon as they are signed into law, will prove to be two small, yet strong steps forward for our state.