It's WLOX News Director Brad Kessie. We heard from MEMA director Robert Latham today. He wants to make sure Mississippians are ready, just in case the storm down near the Yucatan turns into a threat for our coastline.
"There is so much uncertainty among the experts about the path of this potential storm that I want everyone to be prepared as we head into the weekend," said Latham. "With the system already in the Gulf citizens in harm's way may not have a lot of time should it rapidly intensify and head our way."
Our 24/7 Weather team will focus on the tropics this weekend, and throughout the 2012 hurricane season. If this weather complex becomes a named storm (Debbie), we'll put our hurricane plan into action. And that means we'll keep you informed about the storm's track, and what you need to do to prepare for it.
The first thing you can do is download the WLOX app on your Android devices, iPhones and iPads. That will give you instant access to our hurricane center. The second thing you should do is make sure you're signed up for WLOX.com breaking news emails and/or text alerts. During storm season, we'll use breaking news emails to send out pertinent information.
Here's what Mississippi Power is saying today, after the Mississippi Public Service Commission rejected the power company's rate increase request.
"We are extremely disappointed in the action taken today by the Mississippi Public Service Commission. By enacting the provisions of the base load act, customers would have saved several hundreds of millions in interest over the life of the plant. The actions today do not negate the need for the Kemper facility. Construction on the plant will continue as we review the order and determine next steps," Mississippi Power spokesman Jeff Shepard said.
Moments earlier, we received a statement from southern district PSC Commissioner Leonard Bentz. He's a supporter of Mississippi Power's Kemper County lignite plant. However, he voted against the rate increase, even though the money from that increase would have gone to pay off part of the Kemper County construction.
"I believe it to be prudent for this Commission to deny any means of cost recovery from ratepayers until the Mississippi Supreme Court makes their ruling. I still believe the plant is needed and will benefit the customers of Mississippi. However, it is my decision at this time to deny the request," Bentz said.