The City of Oxford and Oxford Police are defending their use of confidential informants. On Sunday, CBS’s news program 60 Minutes reported that Ole Miss students who had been caught selling small amounts of marijuana had been pressured by the Lafayette County Metro Narcotics Unit into turning police informants, putting them at risk. City officials held a press conference yesterday to discuss the drug unit and its tactics. Ward Two Alderman Robyn Tannehill said a commitment to combating crime and illegal drugs is one of the things that makes Oxford a great place to live.
In 1998, the country's largest tobacco companies reached settlement deals with states across America after admitting that the companies knew for years the harmful effects of smoking and other tobacco use. Part of that deal gave the states -- including Mississippi -- large sums of money to fund efforts aimed at reducing use of the cancer-causing products. But how are the states doing seventeen years later? The Campaign For Tobacco-Free Kids has asked that question. We spoke with John Shachter -- director of state communications for the group.
A new study finds there are several ways the University of Mississippi Medical Center can be run more efficiently. Funded by the Center for Mississippi Health Policy, the study compares the current way the College Board oversees UMMC, with best practices from around the country. The report says unlike the hospital boards that run other medical centers, the Mississippi College Board lacks medical center expertise. It also says that the current system is cumbersome because it requires frequent College Board votes regarding contracts and other operational details. Therese Hanna is with the Center for Mississippi Health Policy. She says the way the system works now with the medical center answering directly to the State College Board, it can be difficult to make prompt financial decisions. Hanna spoke with MPB's Maura Moed.
The directors of marathons from around the nation are meeting at the University of Southern Mississippi's Gulf Park campus this week to come up with guidelines for safety and security at running events both large and small. This is the second year for the National Marathon Safety and Security Summit, which is organized by USM's National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security. The summit first came together in response to the Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013. A set of best practices for security and safety were put together at the first summit, and this year, the nearly one hundred attendees will work on the second edition of those guidelines. Virginia Brophy Achman is with the Twin Cities Marathon, which has twelve thousand runners and some three hundred thousand spectators. Achman says this year’s summit is focused on making the best practices accessible to smaller races and cities. She spoke with MPB's Evelina Burnett.