April 1, 2014 11:50:51 AM
A joint House-Senate conference committee Monday filed a new version of HB 615, legislation that will honor former Mississippi State University President Donald Zacharias with a road designation in Oktibbeha County, with additional designations across Mississippi.
The bill's original author, state Rep. Joey Hood, R-Ackerman, said he is optimistic both chambers will agree to the committee's changes and will then be signed into law by Gov. Phil Bryant.
The state will designate the portion of Miss. Highway 25 that intersects with Old Highway 25 and runs to the Oktibbeha-Winston County line in Zacharias' memory if the report is approved. Mississippi Department of Transportation workers will erect and maintain signage along the highway.
Zacharias, the second-longest serving MSU president, died last year. He was 77.
Three additional road designations emerged from conference negotiations. If approved, the bill would establish the Anthony Lucas Memorial Highway in Choctaw County, the William Faulkner Memorial Highway in Union County and the Scott E. Pruitt Memorial Highway in Jackson County.
Originally, HB 615 also designated a portion of Miss. Highway 9 in Choctaw County as the Phyllis A. Graham-Steven B. Moss Memorial Highway. A Senate amendment presented by state Sen. Gary Jackson, R-French Camp, added a similar designation in Webster County for former Eupora police officer Keith Alan Crenshaw.
Crenshaw was killed in the line of duty in October.
Once signed by the governor, the legislation would go into effect July 1.
Carl Smith covers Starkville and Oktibbeha County for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter @StarkDispatch
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