Last night’s WLOX newscasts at 6 and 10 both featured the Bay St Louis DoJ Equitable Sharing fund disaster, first with the 6PM newscast showing an interview with Councilman Boudin where he disclosed the Council was filing claims on the bonds of the Mayor, the late Chief Denardo and the two City Clerks (Kolf and Smith) that had a hand in misspending the Federal grant, which was intended for use in law enforcement. Mayor Fillingame sent in a statement after the 6PM newscast that said:
“I think if it is their personal desire to pursue a claim against any employee or official against all of the professional advice that they have received, there will be great personal liability. The only losses that have been suffered by the taxpayers of Bay St. Louis has been the loss of money spent by the council pursuing claims that don’t exist. We have spent exuberant amounts of money on having this reviewed, audited and looked at legally. The council has gotten no advice from any of the auditors or agencies that have reviewed this, nor have they had any of the city’s legal counsel advise them that there is any claims against any person that has participated in the DOJ program. That money was put in the general fund account and spent by the counsel. None of the money was lost, it was spent in the process of serving the community. Before you have a claim you have to have a loss, and there has been no loss.”
Today Slabbed received an excerpt of a draft of the OSA performance review which debunks the Council going “against all the professional advice that they have received”:
In fairness to the Mayor the final report linked above omitted the repayment language but to say the Council is going against all the professional advice they have received is inaccurate as the above clearly indicates the topic of how to handle a repayment was covered in the OSA performance review. Whether a loss has occurred, a topic Slabbed covered, is a legal question that will have to be sorted out.
Meantime I wonder if anyone else giggled hearing WLOX anchor Christina Garcia use the term “mingle” instead of the proper financial term “commingle” to describe what happened with the DoJ funds in the Bay?
RFP gets the credit for this post for doing most all of the legwork gathering these blasts from the past. First up is the latest from Moody’s Investor Service.
Moody’s Investors Service placed Mississippi Power Company’s ratings on review for another downgrade after the company last week announced a ninth extension for placing the now $7 billion Kemper energy facility into service using lignite. ~ Mary Perez 2-6-17
“There’s a big capital cost, I get that, but the energy coming out of this technology will be super-cheap,” Fanning said.He said Kemper’s technology, which would capture carbon dioxide and other byproducts and sell them to other users is “a home run, not only for the state of Mississippi but for America and the world.” ~ Tom Fanning, Chairman and CEO of Southern Company
Bonus quote from the above article:
Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Republican U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper and others attacked President Barack Obama’s administration and environmentalists.
Giuliani said those opposed to burning coal and drilling for oil are “living in some kind of ideological dream world that makes sense only to you.”
“As long as I’m governor, Mississippi is going to have an energy policy, and our energy policy is more American energy. It’s projects like these and efforts like this that will help us (economically), not only now, but in the long term. . . This is going to produce reliable power for Mississippi for decades and decades to come.” ~ Former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour
But Barbour praised the plant for its relative eco-friendliness, saying, “The Left said there’s no such thing as clean coal — Well, this is it!”
Before we get to what happened very late in last night’s Bay St Louis City Council meeting here is the set up from Slabbed’s coverage on Twitter:
Mayor Fillingame then tries hijacking the meeting to dispute DoJ report. Council Pres Favre shut him down. (2/2)
— Slabbed New Media (@SlabbedNewMedia) February 8, 2017
#BSLCouncil votes to amend agenda after DoJ report is read to include executive session to discuss potential new litigation.
— Slabbed New Media (@SlabbedNewMedia) February 8, 2017
Then new police Chief Freeman took to the podium to update the Council on the massive mold problems at the Bay PD station house. This problem has been an open secret locally for around 10 days, Slabbed hearing about it from a Bay City employee that was not authorized to speak with the media. Unable to keep it secret from the public Hizzoner took the story to the Echo, which ran it in today’s paper: Continue reading “It was indeed a Humdinger…..”
Those following Slabbed on Twitter saw that yesterday I met with Bay Waveland School Board Trustee Mike Bell. The following Tweet of Cassandra Favre’s story in last Saturday’s Echo was the catalyst:
BW School Board creates conflict of interest in order to add new assistant superintendent to Central Office https://t.co/pOxcPuimea
— Slabbed New Media (@SlabbedNewMedia) January 28, 2017
Trustee Bell also invited both Lana Noonan of the Hancock County Alliance for Good Government and Cami Cornfoot, a former Candidate for School Board who remains very active volunteering at the schools to sit in. We had a frank and wide ranging discussion, some of which will be covered in the next post.
To his credit Bell was proactive gathering information from the central office to share with us and that information included a list of top administrator salaries and how they were funded. As Lana pointed out that information alone has news value and it will be shared with the people that read Slabbed. We’re also going to address the toxic environment created by the void left by the departure of former Superintendent Becky Ladner. Hopefully we can distill a very complex and fluid set of circumstances that became evident at the last Board of Trustees meeting.
This much is clear from those observing the School Board, which was dominated by a single forceful personality for the better part of the last 13 years. It now has five individuals that are of five different minds that are working in what is new territory for each. I used the term “fractious” to describe the Board and not in a negative connotation. It’s a good sign the system is working like it should.