Congress to Investigate Jackson, Miss. Water Crisis

Photo: Getty Images [via Al Jazeera]

The Facts

  • In a letter sent to Republican Gov. Tate Reeves of Mississippi by two Democratic representatives, Congress announced that it will be investigating the water crisis that struck the state's capital, Jackson, and left 150K people without water for several days late this past summer.

  • The joint investigation led by Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), will be conducted by the House Homeland Security and the Oversight and Reform committees. The investigation will probe how Miss. used $10B from the American Rescue Plan Act and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and another $429M that was "specifically allotted to enhance the state's water infrastructure."

The Spin

Establishment-critical narrative

Jackson's water crisis is due to roadblocks from the state in supporting this majority-Black city. Decades of state-sanctioned dysfunction have led to infrastructure decay and failure. The racist and condescending parental-like oversight has left vulnerable groups - largely people of color - stuck with inadequate water services.

Pro-establishment narrative

While the current state administration did not create this problem, they are working diligently to help the city of Jackson with its water infrastructure. Jackson will have to develop a plan to receive the money and Mississippi will work in partnership with municipal officials to lobby for additional federal funds as needed.

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