MS ranking drops to D- in 2015 State Integrity Investigation

MS ranking drops to D- in 2015 State Integrity Investigation

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The Center for Public Integrity conducts an annual state integrity investigation to determine which states are working to deter corruption in government.

Only three states scored higher than a D+ in the integrity report and 11 states flunked.

Mississippi got a D- grade on the report, coming in 33rd in the country, according to the organizations website. 

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Organization analysis Anna Wolfe said the low rating maybe due to recent scandals such as the former Department of Corrections commissioner pleading guilty to corruption and for accepting bribes.

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She writes, "The state ethics commission rarely uses its power to investigate public officials and does not make public all of the cases it does pursue."

Wolfe said Mississippi is suffering from a major score drop from their 2012 ranking of 6th in the country, but the two score cannot be directly compared.

According to the organization's website, the State Integrity Investigation has been improved over the last few years to update methodology and to eliminate the category for redistricting since that process occurs only once every 10 years.

The Center for Public Integrity is one of the country's oldest and largest nonpartisan, nonprofit investigative news organizations. Their mission: To serve democracy by revealing abuses of power, corruption and betrayal of public trust by powerful public and private institutions, using the tools of investigative journalism.