On Tuesday morning, Mississippi House District 120 Representative Richard Bennett (R-Long Beach, E Pass Christian) was reportedly appointed to chair the powerful Education Com­mittee by Speaker Phillip Gunn (R-Madison).

Bennett had served as the chairman to the Gaming Com­mittee for the past five years, while being selected by col­leagues to lead the Perfor­mance Evaluation and Ex­penditure Review (PEER) Committee earlier this year.

Local officials and fel­low state legislators said that Bennett’s meeting with Gunn Tuesday morning solidified the appointment.

Although Gunn, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, and Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant have sup­ported “school choice” in the past few years by trimming public school funds, Bennett doesn’t appear to hold similar feelings.

Representative Richard Bennett congratulated Senator Tommy Gollott

Representative Richard Bennett congratulated Senator Tommy Gollott on breaking the record of longest-serving state legislator at a ceremony honoring Gollott in late 2017.

Bennett was photographed by The Gazebo Gazette on December 12 for honoring the Long Beach School District with every school receiving an “A” grade in the district. He introduced Dr. Carey Wright, the Mississippi Department of Education Superintendent, who was traveling to the Coast for the “Celebration of Excel­lence” tour.

Since the Mississippi Leg­islature took no action on the Mississippi Adequate Educa­tion Program (MAEP) last year, the debate will begin by Jan. 30 this year. All bills will be reported for floor action by either house.

Bennett is a member of the Foreign Trade Zone, Gulf Coast Council of Govern­ments, Long Beach Drug Task Force, and Hazard Mitigation Council.

Bennett was born June 25, 1957 and is married to the for­mer Tricia Clark. He is of the Catholic faith.

Story by Hunter Dawkins