State government operations affected by Jackson water system failure

Jackson’s water crisis is affecting state government, with some offices based in Jackson reporting closures, delayed or shortened schedules and reduced staffing.

The Department of Finance and Administration, which oversees and maintains state office buildings and grounds, directed inquiries about state office operations to Gov. Tate Reeves’ office, which did not respond to a request for comment.

But several state agencies have reported their status. They include:

Mississippi Department of Human Services 

The MDHS office in Hinds County is closed due to lack of water. Hinds County DHS staff is working from other MDHS offices in the metro and continuing their eligibility appointments by phone and video conference. Clients with appointments in Hinds County may expect contact from the case manager around their scheduled appointment time. 

Applications for assistance and services may be completed online at Applications – Mississippi Department of Human Services (ms.gov)

Child Support Enforcement offices in Jackson are closed.  Please contact Child Support Customer Service at 877.882.4916 or visit one of the following locations:

  • Ridgeland
  • Yazoo City
  • Magee
  • Vicksburg
  • Forest 

MDHS programmatic staff are processing applications and receiving calls as they are received. 

Supreme Court, state courts

The Mississippi Supreme Court received communications on Monday afternoon, Aug. 29, from the state Department of Finance and Administration and the State Personnel Board and reviewed announcements from the City of Jackson regarding water issues affecting the capital city.

After conferring with the Supreme Court Executive Committee and department heads, Chief Justice Mike Randolph announced that the Gartin Justice Building will temporarily operate with reduced staff on Tuesday.  Most staff of the appellate courts and the Administrative Office of Courts will work remotely.  No decision has been made as to how long the reduced staffing and remote operations will be necessary.

Chief Justice Randolph, in his capacity as chief administrative officer of all courts in the state, finds that consistent with the Constitution of the State of Mississippi, all courts shall remain open. The Supreme Court, the Mississippi Court of Appeals and the Administrative Office of Courts will operate with essential staffing to keep the courts open. The office of the Clerk of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals will remain open.

Presiding Justice Jim Kitchens said, “Because of COVID, we know how to operate remotely.”

Department of Archives and History/museums

The Two Mississippi Museums, Eudora Welty House & Garden, and the archives library will be closed Tuesday, August 30, 2022, due to the low water pressure in Jackson.

Follow us on FacebookInstagram, or Twitter for updates. 

Visit www.mdah.ms.gov/explore-mississippi for more information about our one-of-a-kind museums, historical sites and cultural attractions throughout the state. Learn more about researching at archives here.

Driver’s License Services

Due to the water emergency in the city limits of Jackson, Mississippi, the Driver’s Service Bureau located at 1900 E. Woodrow Wilson Ave. in Jackson, Mississippi will be closed until further notice.

Driver’s Service staff will relocate to the Pearl Office/Troop C located at 3851 Highway 468 West, Pearl, Mississippi, 39208. This location will be appointment only. We encourage you to visit our website for any additional information.

“We appreciate your patience during this crisis in Jackson,” said Deputy Commissioner Keith Davis. “I assure you that our staff is committed to working and providing the customer service you come to expect from the Mississippi Department of Public Safety. We apologize for this inconvenience.

Attorney General’s office

AG spokeswoman Michelle Williams said: “Some are teleworking. Many are in the office.  We are asking everyone to go to the ground floor to use the restroom.”

Secretary of State

Office buildings located in the Jackson area are temporarily closed to the public due to the ongoing Jackson water crisis. All staff and resources are still available and will continue to provide first class service to all Mississippians by responding to emails, answering calls, and aiding with online resources.

For assistance, call 601-359-1350 during business hours or visit our website, sos.ms.gov, for more information. We will continue to provide updates, as necessary.

Department of Insurance

As of midday, Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney said his staff was working in the Woolfolk state office building downtown, though he said the water pressure was low.

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