Ward 4 Councilman’s Interference in Ward 2 dispute between shop owners the talk of the town

Ward 4 Councilman Larry Smith

He who rules his tongue is greater than he who rules the City ~ A Modern take on Proverbs 16:32

Early in October tongues were wagging in Old Town after Ward 4 Councilman Larry Smith intervened in a dispute between shop owners with Smith playing the Administrative role of code enforcement using the Bay St Louis police to harass a business owner on the first weekend of cruising the coast. This underlying dispute has been simmering between Kathleen Johnson and Yuki Northington for a while. Honestly folks I normally tune these kind of squabbles out, but when a City Councilman from a different Ward jumps in it certainly became Slabbed worthy, especially after Smith passed threats against Johnson recently on Facebook.

To set things up we go back to the weekend that Cruising the Coast 2017 began on September 29, 2017, when the merchants in Old Town began setting up for the influx of classic cars and people that would pack over the place the next week. This is what happened per Kathleen Johnson (Edited slightly for typos and clarity):

1. [Police] Report was originally filed Friday night for illegal canopies when we had a reception for two artists. Two canopies.

2. We had prior put in a Special Event application for that event. There was a followup phone call from Mary at City Hall and then a request for an office visit on the application from Charlene Black. Charlene expressed that she did not see any issue with the reception. She was concerned that a piece of art would be sold from under canopy. I told her that was the entire idea of business – to sell.

3. We were never advised if the permit was approved or not approved. Absolutely zero response by 5pm Friday. Reception was at six. We went ahead with our plans as there were other events in town using canopies.

4. Saturday Councilman Larry Smith called police from Sycamore House. Then he proceeded to stand on sidewalk and direct the officers for the next two hours through three visits. Finally officers came over requesting we take down the four canopies (three had art and one being used for shade for customers). Two on one property. Two on another. We refused telling them that we had done due diligence attending [townhall] meeting on 19th with Mayor, Chief of Police, Ordinance Officer, and (Ward 2 Councilman) Gene Hoffman followed up with private meeting with Hoffman, Mayor, and office visit with Charlene Black. Also a letter sent to Mayor and Chief of Police.

5. Meantime [another shop owner] called the landlord telling him police had been at our store all day because we did not have permits and that the City was going to start fining landlords for having canopies on their property. This shop owner was at public meeting on 19th and was well aware of the fact none of that was true.

6. The Owner’s response was to immediately call month to month lease holder and tell him I was to be removed from property by close of business Tuesday or he would cancel lease on 1st. Owner instructed the lessee to tell me I was banned from all of his properties on Main for not doing due diligence to have a canopy permit. He has also mandated that there will be no outside sales at any of his properties on Main – permit or not.

7. Gene Hoffman is “sorry that happened” and Gary Knoblock states they will “talk about it” at Tuesdays meeting. Gary also said it was clearly understood by all at City Hall that everyone was going to be able to use canopies for Cruising the Coast.

Kathleen’s bullet point seven is the one that is the most problematic because everyone did have canopies up that weekend. Lana Noonan of the Hancock Alliance for Good Government tells Slabbed that she counted at least 30 canopies that weekend on the first two blocks of Main street yet no other business was singled out for “special” code enforcement and as a result of the Ward 4 Councilman’s actions and apparently one of Ms. Johnson’s competitors, her business was destroyed.

Looking at this scenario where the Ward 4 Councilman is in Ward 2 intervening in a squabble between shop owners, a cynical man could easily conclude that Ward 2 Councilman Gene Hoffman was using Smith to do his dirty work and indeed that theory has been floating out there. I personally discount that because of Smith is known locally for being a hot head that has no problems displaying his ill temper while Gene Hoffman does not strike me as being the type to involve another Councilman in his Ward’s business owner disputes with the possible exception of the Councilman at Large. That said these are questions that Gene Hoffman needs to address because if Larry Smith is both Ward 4 Councilman and Ward 2 enforcer for Hoffman such would come clear in short order and I’d posit such would not be a good thing for Hoffman’s political career longevity.

Not satisfied with merely destroying Ms. Johnson’s business the back and forth between Ms. Johnson and Smith continued online for the entire month and culminated with Larry Smith posting the following to Facebook:

LS FB ScreenShot
Facebook Screen Capture Courtesy of a Reader

The response to Smith by others that saw the above were not very kind to him and in their own way served as a reminder that foul tempered hot-heads generally are not considered to have the “temperament for the trade” for politics and as a general rule do not last very long in office.

Slabbed confirmed with Councilman at Large Knoblock that while the new canopies ordinance was being drawn up that it was indeed his understanding that the Main Street merchants would be allowed to set up for Cruising the Coast 2017 as they always had in the past with canopies. His understanding was obviously right for every business but one.

It should be lost on no one that code enforcement is an Administrative function in strong Mayor Bay St Louis and frankly if the City had 7 Council members freelancing as mini-Mayors chaos would rule the day. I’m not sure what Mayor Favre was doing while his police department was harassing a business owner at the behest of the Ward 4 Councilman but the tread marks on his scalp are unmistakable.

Did Councilman Smith’s ham handed actions put the City at risk for legal liability? That is not a question I’m qualified to answer but I do know that Ms. Johnson has consulted a lawyer and filed an ethics complaint against Smith and City employee Charlene Black. Where this all leads is anyone’s guess. This I do know, the business district in Old Town Bay St Louis is a mix of some of the nicest people you could ever meet along with some of the most self centered, anal retentive creatures you could ever imagine.

I suspect we’ll be hearing more about this in time while the Council works on the new ordinance.

79 thoughts on “Ward 4 Councilman’s Interference in Ward 2 dispute between shop owners the talk of the town”

  1. As a part time artist I guess it’s true! Lil Les Larry will oversee all on patrol of BSL with Runyourmouth Rhonda! Merge 2,3 and 4 Wards for Lil Les Larry: no Codes, no Police needed, hell he may fire the Mayor.

  2. We have 25 lawsuits and at least one or two FBI Investigations going on, and our focus is circus tents and merchant squabbles.

    1. And not knowing your statutory authority!!
      I know it is necessary to have rules and ordinances in civilized society, and I don’t mean to diminish the importance of that debate, but this Facebook post upstages all of that.
      Very serious and troubling.
      Wonder if Facebook has been notified?!

    2. Rachel,

      I thought you were applying for a job/ jobs in city hall-I know of one that you stated has been filled.
      building official -no qualifications-where is accountability.
      As a woman to another-maybe you will get a job-I sure hope so-

  3. As an artist with my own gallery in Gulfport I attended several outdoor art exhibits on Second Saturday.
    The picky attitudes and measuring lengths and widths and getting down to the 2inch rule pretty well did it for me.
    I found the golfcarts driven by children and those driven by adults with cocktail in hand to be more dangerous than one chair leg being “over the line”
    My last event started at 4:30 am being hustled along by police to get my car off the street while i was hurrying as quickly as possible..ps. I was the only one there. The stars were still out.
    One policeman had something rather negatuve to say about why I was setting up with. Her
    Thought that sounded a little juvenile.
    We sow what we reap.
    I am happy in Gulfport where the reason to have an art sale is just that..
    Sell Art

    1. Ok Ms. Lana & Mary! Let’s buy Yuke’s and name it the Social Sheriff. Larry can have a office in Old Town so he can stroll the streets with his Code citation book and handy Facebook IPhone to call Police or threaten you. Don’t need new Police Complex now. You’re so right Ms. Rachael.

    2. Call me now please
      I do ‘t want to tip my hand
      I hope the Atty you spoke with didn’t have an office in Bay/Wave because you can bet he told the Mayor everything you told him

  4. The down town merchants are about as one way on things as you can get. They think everyone has to bow to them. They try to control other peoples private property, private parking and scrutinize any event in old town as if they own it. They will not contribute one (1) dollar to anything including their own trolley wants. They are a bunch of snow flakes that melt if something is not just like they think it should be, all without a personal nickel invested. The Tax Payers pay for cruising, not the merchants. They just take low hanging fruit and bitch about everything that isn’t their idea or perspective or a direct benefit to them. Tourism is funded by Hotel Taxes and City Tax Payers not one supportive dollar from the Business Owners in old town who think they drive the future of the city. Yes, Filingame pandered his snowflakes to the point that they believed every lie he told them. There has been more tax dollar diversions to this complaining, pandering, begging, pity potters area than anywhere in the city yet they want more and give less. End of Rant. These people need to grow up and join the rest of us.

  5. A lot of the “Old Town” merchants are not only business owners but property owners. We pay sales tax, property tax and have a privilege tax license. The current ordinance, which has not been enforced until recently is for the safety and protection of business with a store front. Larry Smith should not be faulted, but instead saluted. He understands the struggles of business owners who pay rent or mortgage, insurance and utilities. When you set up a tent outside, on property you are not paying for it hurts everyone. If the people who have berated Larry Smith like the flea market set up, please go to a flea market. You are not the market that the shops of old town are for. Also, as an FYI, Cruisin’ rules are set by their board. Not the merchants or the city.

    1. Ms Collins are you saying that a business that rents somehow escapes the cost of local property taxes and is exempt from paying paying sales taxes? According to the Hancock GeoPortal website Ms Johnson’s old location was sent a property tax bill just like the other properties.

      Explain to me how the money you pay in taxes differs from the rest because I am not seeing any difference.

      Also how do you justify using a city owned lot for your customers to park on free. How much rent does Twin Light pay the City for that privilege?

      1. When I had my business downtown a few years ago, one problem with tents was that the people who rented the space from the shopkeepers & set up tents did not charge sales tax on their goods. This is supposed to be changing by having the downtown business owner run all the sales through their business, but in the past this was how the city was missing out on sales tax & these weekend vendors could offer tax free sales that regular merchants were not able to. Hopefully that has changed now. Also someone should be concerned with insurance, who covers the tent vendor -the shop owner, the property owner, do they carry their own insurance? Also in my almost 5 years of having a shop downtown I never heard of the first block and the second block fighting.

    2. Ms. Collins to follow up with you Kathleen Johnson tells me she collected and remitted sales tax on every penny of what she sold.

      Again my question to you is how the money you pay in taxes differs from Ms. Johnson because at face value it appears you are saying you and your buddies are somehow better and superior to the other businesses that may lease space instead of owning it and I’m not seeing it.

      Frankly it makes Mr. Smith look like even more of an ass for diving into such a parochial matter.

    3. Excuse me? As local artists, residing HERE, in Bay St Louis a/o the other “townships” located in the same country, we DO pay taxes, we DO have as much to do with the subject of tourism and other activities as any other resident here, etc. The fact that some people are attempting to inhibit my ability to be a contributing consumer in your little town, because I choose to make, and sell, artwork, in an attempt to SURVIVE, because social security disability income isn’t enough to live on, simply shows a tendency to discriminate, by people who obviously think they are “better than” anyone else. Get over it, assholes! The fact that some of us, even with disabilities!, have the ability to be creative, to the point where others will pay a minimal amount,( we usually see just enough to cover the cost of what we create), to enjoy the artwork we create, despite being told, by other government entities, that we’re “too severely disabled” to “qualify” for employment… Are you saying we should NOT be “allowed” to actually be part of the rest of the, uh, YOUR community? Can you spell the word ‘discrimination’? Can you define it, correctly? Have you perused any part of the United States Constitution, especially the part about Civil Rights? It’s not just the ten that are commonly known as the bill of rights, there are actually pages of “Rights” listed, all of them individually numbered, and blocking those of us who create, and try to share/sell or creations, with the endorsement of those whose income allows them to actually lease property where they, too, can sell things, is in serious violation of quite a few of those “Rights” we are assured of, just like any other American citizen. If you do not like the fact that some people are considered “disabled”, and don’t want to share part of “your” little community with us, have you thought of moving? God knows, WE can’t afford to.

  6. Tax Payers fund tourism and tourism funds cruising. The merchants who so dearly say they need these events as direct beneficiaries should help fund tourism. Not keep coming to the indirect recipient, the tax payer, to fund events. The tax diversions are minimal. If $1,000,000 is spent in BSL on Cruising and the reported, the Tax Payer would only recoup $12,600 after funding $20,000+ up front and supplying clean up and police a fire on overtime and comp time etc….No one wants to do the math if it benefits them. Pay up and participate! Own your own success!

  7. Looks like the Old Building Official Charlie O. still has connections with City Hall or the Building Dept. He has been remodeling his home on Bay View Ct without inspections, dumpster or portolets as required for the unconnected tax payer. Some things just never change. Once someone gets on the public tit you can never get them to quit sucking.

  8. It would be interesting to know at what point Councilman Smith arbitrarily decided that Ward II Councilman Gene Hoffman, was incapable of handling issues in his ward. I have heard that Gene was out of town that weekend. But, we do live in the 21st century. Send him a text message.
    When Smith approached Charlene Black, she ( a long time city employee) should have informed him that enforcing ordinances is administrative, not Council business, and additionally, she is not an elected official. Call the Mayor, who is elected, and legally assigned this responsibility. I understand was in town.
    But, in the final analysis, none of this ordinance debate justifies anyone involved enduring a public disparaging of their reputation, and a threat if they do not comply with the Councilman Smith’s perspective on the situation.
    We all have a past, everyone of us. I hope Councilman Smith is not convinced that excludes him.
    And, in my opinion, that is the most serious issue here; not where we sell our trinkets!!

    1. Lana I’m still sitting here in amazement trying to understand under what paradigm a Main Street merchant can think their tax $$$ are somehow superior to another business to the point it is used to justify what happened back on September 29 to Ms. Johnson. And even if every thing Ms. Collins said were true which it is not, how the end can justify the means Larry Smith used to chase Ms. Johnson out of Old Town.

      The insularity is astonishing.

      1. Maybe this will help. I just received a text saying how much the two blocks of shop owners on Main St. hate each other!!
        Not the first time I have been told this.
        Maybe that is why the Executive Director of the Chamber of Commerce, Tish Williams, petitioned the city officials recently to allow her to do advertising for downtown.
        She said ” your Downtown is in trouble. They are hurting!”
        A house divided against itself will surely fall!

        1. You nailed it Lana: A Place Apart. Then again maybe I nailed it too:

          “The business district in Old Town Bay St Louis is a mix of some of the nicest people you could ever meet along with some of the most self centered, anal retentive creatures you could ever imagine.”

      2. You know, Doug, human nature is at its most pleasant
        demeanor when things are bountiful and there us plenty to go around.
        It’s when the pickings are slim that the bad side of our nature surfaces. We all have to wrestle for the scraps leaving us at odds with each other.
        The recent report on all media outlets this week about the sad state of the coast economy could be the cause of the mentality
        of Main St. in Mayberry
        by the Sea right now😩😩$$

        1. the cause of the sad state of the coast economy could be the mentality
          of Main St. in Mayberry by the Sea right now😩😩$$

          Seriously- small minds thinking small thoughts..mainly “What’s in in for me?”…and using goobermint as a tool to do unto the others because those are their goobers in the goobermint…that’s not exactly a novel thing.

  9. Artist sent this info from the past: remember as “private person” Larry took to Facebook and “Council video” to call some mentioned Council dumb bastards, stooges and other degrading names…. go Ms.Kathleen, what’s good for the “past” Larry is good enough for Councilcrazy Larry.

  10. The Old town Merchants take no responsibility for promoting BSL. They want others to do it and then focus it on them. They range from the best to the worst and harass anyone who has something creative and different than what they visualize. Doing the same old shit and expecting better results is called insanity.

    They mostly represent the liberal agenda but as we have learned over the past year or so they are vicious and mean to anyone who differs in opinion, just the same as on the national level. The Freda Freaks are not who they want you to believe they are.

    They do not respect individualism or entrepreneurship if it is different that what they are doing. They mostly want control for their own agendas.

  11. I am so saddened to see the disgraceful behavior of BSL City employees. I thought that this insular and parochial attitude in the Bay had died out but I am wrong. As one of the founders of the “Downtown Merchants Association 30 years ago…which has long gone by the wayside…it pains me to see the small mindedness and even worse…the misuse of authority. As to Ms. Johnson’s past…that was hinted at….I am privy to it all and I can tell you that she was one of the hardest working individuals in the community helping to rebuild after Katrina…taking nothing for herself, living in un ac spaces, providing labor and love to so many in need. It was only when she stood up to a misuse of authority that the false lies and rumors started…by those who would have unfairly benefited.

    1. Thank you, Terry Latham. I have also heard of the wonderful things she has done for the area. She has been a champion for the underdog and those who need help. I do not know Larry Smith but anyone posting what he did on Facebook needs to be swiftly dealt with. I was shocked at the threats he made.
      BSL does not need to be put in the spotlight in such a negative way.
      This is all sad. Are there any guidelines for ethics in this situation for elected officials?
      It makes me thankful I live in Waveland instead of BSL.

      Last but not least, those who posted anonymously made harsh accusations without using their real names should not their identity should not be given credibility in this discussion.

  12. FIrst of all Kathleen Johnsons word is about as good as a three dollar bill…
    Anyone who has had any dealings with this character understands what I am talking about. Her reputation precedes her, feel free to google her activities after Katrina in waveland. The absentee owner of her former place of business, James Garcia, told me she was told to leave because she never paid rent, she rang up her sales on her own and didn’t put through the shop. She also lied and told police she had permission to set up at Bags and Bows while they were out of town, which was not true.
    For the most part the comments on here are from busy bodies and malcontenrs who have nothing better to do but take up space at the bays city council meeting… Lana Noonan , you live in waveland , why don’t you get a life and worry about waveland. The little hate group you organized is full of impotent crybabies who are only happy when they are bitching. You at least have the balls to put your name on your post…the other losers,,” pissed”,stupi d is as stupid does” and”fact not fiction” and “confused” hide behind Facebook . Come out from under your rock and identify yourself.

    I agree with the owners of twin lights. The commenters on this thread could not manage a business if there life depended on it. And Mississippi dept of revenue has the sales tax figures, I guarntee ms johnsons figures would pale in comparison to anyone on the block.

    Larry smith patronizes everyone in old town, and understands the necessity of not letting it spiral down to a flea market atmosphere, habited by fly by nights who contribute NOTHING to the bay.

    Thank you Larry smith , we wii stand behind you at the next council meeting!

    1. Hi Linda, thanks for stopping in.

      Slabbed by Slabbed New Media LLC is a section 230 Interactive Service Provider (ISP) that is regsitered and listed as such by the US Copyright Office. That is important because it profoundly colors my decision as manager of the LLC to be very light moderating third party comments and we do appreciate them.

      We very rarely edit comments but we will pull a comment at the request of the commenter. The contact email is on the contact page.

      Thank you again for stopping in with us.

    2. Hi Linda,
      You know, for the record, it really is okay for people to belong to organizations like The Hancock County Alliance for Good Government. I do live in Waveland, and we have members who are residents and property owners in every municipality and unincorporated area of the County.
      In fact, I think one of Larry’s most ardent supporters also lives in Waveland. Hope that’s okay with you. I certainly have no problem with it.
      I prefer to identify myself, but don’t pass judgement on those who prefer to post anonymously for whatever reason.
      As I said in a previous comment, in my opinion, the ordinance issue here has merit, but to me the threatening facebook post of Larry’s against a citizen, any citizen, is far worse, and in greater need of addressing.
      For those who may not think it is an issue, just take a moment to read it slowly, and insert your name where Kathleen’s is and see if you would feel comfortable being maligned like that in public.
      The citizens of Hancock County, whether in cities or the county deserve better public officials than those who would stoop to that level. We can’t have public officials who think they can govern from the throne of threats. It is unrealistic to imagine you won’t have a difference of opinion with a constituent from time to time, but to take it to that all time low is inexcusable.
      I feel confident the Mississippi Ethics Commission can and will weigh in on this through the Miss. Ethics in Government Statute.
      Actually the businesses in Ward 2 are not Larry’s constituents. Just because he shops in Ward 2, doesn’t mean he was elected to represent them. The Ward 2 Councilman, Gene Hoffman, should have had a shot at negotiating this situation; he and Mayor Favre, who is ultimately and legally responsible for enforcing ordinances.
      I know Joy and Pam from Twin Lights well, and must have missed the comment you attributed to them about the commenters on this thread not being able to run a business if their life depended on it. That really doesn’t sound like them. In fact, that is how I met them, through business. They were clients in the beauty salon where I worked, and I have shopped at Twin Lights for a long time. Lovely shop. And they have been great supporters of another organization I belong to: the Bay-Waveland Garden Club. Nice gals. Love both of them.
      While my life obviously does not meet your standards, rest assured I am satisfied with how I spend my time.
      By the way, I don’t have balls. I have ovaries. I am not at all confused about my identity.
      See you Tuesday!!

      1. For over 24 years I’ve signed the front side of my paychecks Lana. I’ve personally witnessed mankinds inhumanity to mankind in high margin industries like landfills, logging and such. A Place Apart has Chinese trinket retailers at each others throats. Bless their hearts each and every one.

        Before the story ran Slabbed confirmed Larry Smith’s involvement in this childish saga. Linda’s comments seem to admit what happened. These Old Town merchants certainly have the crass covered.

    3. Linda, WOW throw it out there. The way I see it we all have varying degrees of issues. I know Mrs Johnson. She is a competitive lady trying to make a living. Her landlord needs to handle his issues legally if they are real. Late rent is ok when it is negotiated and agreed on. I live with daily on my properties. Late agreed rent does not make a person bad. She was not prosecuted and they would have if it was. She just doesn’t fit in to yalls club. Is that a problem? Liberals are very angry and aggressive!

      1. Stupid Is That Stupid Does,
        I know Liberals are angry and aggressive, but for clarification, Larry ran as a Republican.
        Yep, you can thank the local Republican Committee for this!! Now, I said Republican, not Conservative.

    4. Your “standing”_will not be supported by your supposed education. Your lack of ability, regarding spelling, is atrocious, and isn’t able to be comprehended anywhere, where educated people gather. If your voice, or opinion, is actually “heard”, (paid attention to), in any of the tax payer endorsed, supposedly ‘community enhancing’ council meetings, I wonder is there anyone actually qualified there, to supervise recess breaks, and to serve the juice and cookies?

  13. Dear stupid,Lana and David,

    I refuse to post on a platform that can edit my reply. Apparently no one on this thread is interested in learning about the true character and motives of Kathleen Johnson. And anyone who polititicizes this as a liberal/ conservative issue is just plain ignorant.
    You all keep kissing each other’s ass…and have SLABBED protect you from the big bad wolf….you’re a joke, this platform is a joke, and Kathleen Johnson is the biggest joke of all….no one will lease to her, therefore she has no business, go back to flea market where you came from!so long snivels!

        1. Cyber challenged Linda found out last night that interactive website operators can also ban disruptive commenters. Moderation is saved when the comment goes straight into file 13.

            1. I am one appointment away from jumping back in. Kathleen Johnson has a Facebook post worth repeating.

              Did anyone see Mrs. Northington and Miss Moon at the last City Council meeting? I didn’t either, at least not on the live stream.

              1. I was there, and neither of them were.
                There were tons of people, so I could’ve missed one or the other, perhaps they came late and stood outside.

    1. Toooo funny.
      Looks like Linda has discovered this site is for adults who can actually recognize and report the truth.
      Good night Stupid and Doug or did she call you David🤣🤣😂😂😩😩.

  14. Unbelievable posts! Everything said now has to have politics entered.
    I also smell slander! There is a quote that I have found to be true.

    “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
    ― Anaïs Nin

    Every one of us come from different backgrounds. We see things from our perspectives. It is human nature. We should act according and work it out without Hate and Slander.

  15. You know, these Southern Gothic outbursts by public officials and their supporters venting passionate convictions over various local issues are highly entertaining, but do none of us any good. We who live in Diamondhead have seen our fair share of them over the last year, and the Bay has had its own experiences. (Thank you, Waveland; as far as I know, you’ve avoided such scenes.) We’re all facing the widening economic gap between the coast and rest of the state and country as John Hairston pointed out, and we need to come to grips with it in a serious way. Pitching nasty fits and way overstepping acceptable bounds in real and/or virtual public spaces is counterproductive. Hancock County is in a better place than some others for improving its lot if we get to work on it, so best to leave the Tennessee Williams-style stuff to Little Theatre. Elected officials and business people need a professional approach, pronto.

    1. Well said,Peggy.
      But, just my opinion, but these foul mouth, threatening tactics by an elected official on social media has to be exposed and checked.
      We’ve tolerated enough Tom Foolery over the years, but this is way over the line of decency.
      With 25 law suits already, I pray this does not present another cause for action against the city.
      Smith was not going after Johnson on a personal issue. It was City business and he got a city employees assistance.
      Can’t be good.

      1. I totally agree, Lana, and I’m grateful for Slabbed and Facebook where the actual posts are revealed for all to see. Time was, as you and I grew up, that such scenes traveled the grape vine getting cleaned up or dirtied down along the way depending on the teller. It’s good that today we can see and know how these things really happened; yes, the foul-mouthed and threatening ones definitely need to be seen for who and what they are. It’s a free country, thank God, where they can say what they like, but the rest of us, as Paul points out below, are likewise free to cast our votes or spend our money according to what we think of their conduct.

        1. What they need to be made to understand is we can say what we want to an extent. When our ” free speech via social media”
          includes threatening someone with an ultimatum or consequences if they use their free speech–
          Well, that’s a whole new ball game.
          This cage of monkeys was unlocked on social media
          ( where it is actually forbidden on the site).
          We’ll see how herding them back into captivity works out.🙊🙉🙈!!!
          Always so good hearing from you.

          1. Many thanks for all you do, Lana, to all the crew who post the facts here, and of course to Doug for hosting and posting.

  16. We visit Bay St Louis two to three times a year to enjoy the beautiful downtown and unwind. I know which shops we’ll pass by next time we visit.

  17. Threats from city officials are out of bounds, period. Mr. Smith, a psychologist, should better than know that. If not, a lesson from the mayor is in order.
    Ms. Johnson can also get worked up and no longer lives or works here, and does not own property here.
    There has been a meeting with Mayor Farve, Ward 2 Councilman Gene Hoffman, and the merchants.
    What more does one do with adults? A time out? These merchants DO NO MAKE OR ENFORCE ORDINANCES. Period. They can hate each other all they want at their own peril. The city needs to finally write an ordinance about canopies, enforce it, and be done with this. Same with golf carts.
    We really do have much larger and important issues in Bay St Louis.

    1. Banning canopies, golf carts, and rock and roll. We really have our priorities mapped out here, don’t we?

  18. It wii be interesting to see what Old Town Bay St. Louis Merchants show up at Tuesday’s Council meeting to support Cyber Bullying!!

  19. Cyber bully? Who needs that when you can do it in person. I rarely go to Second Saturday because of the “downtown elite.” A couple of years ago, I was carrying an empty plastic wine glass while walking down the sidewalk with friends and family. We encountered a “Birkenstock shoe wearing Nazi” who proceeded to inform her children (who were not even old enough to know what wine was much less the difference between glass and plastic.) that we were breaking the law by using glass containers on public streets. Rather than demonstrate to her by striking my plastic glass against a fence to show her total ignorance, I should have struck it against her head which would have resulted in the fanatical screams practiced by protesting liberals. I quit going to Second Saturday. Tried again by bringing my daughter and boyfriend to Freida Fest. We crossed the street legally at the crosswalk, stepped onto the sidewalk and were almost hit by a golf cart on the sidewalk attempting to park in a vacant lot. That’s enough bullying for me.

    1. Ah, Freda Fest!! When I was a child in school in the Bay, every year on Veterans’ Day, every school, private and public marched their students to the Court House where a beautiful ceremony was held honoring our Veterans and current service personnel. The school bands marched in addition to the band from Keesler. It was an event that I hold very fond memories of especially since all the men in my family volunteered for military service to our country.
      What do they celebrate now in Bay St. Louis? The life of an avowed communist that hated our country and didn’t miss an opportunity to demonstrate against us. All of this hoopla because she was an artist. They even dress their children like her!! Unbelievable. Seems like it shouldn’t be too difficult to find other artists to celebrate–maybe a different one each year.
      I know it is a different world we live in now. Sometimes you just have to pinch yourself.
      As Doug said, some of the shop owners on Main St. are some of the nicest folks you’d want to meet, some of the others??!! Oh, well!

  20. Eagerly awaiting the agenda. Will Councilman Hoffman, who’s having another meeting on Tuesday with the merchants before the Council mtg, or the Mayor, have the kahunas to address Councilman Smith’s behavior?

    1. Maybe everyone should call their Councilman and insist Council pass a motion prohibiting the City Attorney from litigating the facebook part of this issue.
      The good people of Bay St. Louis have been on the hook for all of the misappropriated public funds for the past 8 years just because they were used as the last Administration’s captive audience with their tax dollars. This has to STOP.
      City employees and elected officials have to held ACCOUNTABLE for their own actions.
      Revoke some bonds or tell them to get out their own checkbooks.

      1. The aggrieved party should bring charges and let the attorney defend, if defendable, the councilman. I’m sure he was pulled into the fray buy the persuasive main street crew. It should be just an ordinance problem not an attack but hey I’m sure he wishes he could have pulled it back. Look at the Restaurant run by a Nancy or Lulu or whoever. They don’t have a dumpster as is required by ordinance and state law.

        1. I do not see where the taxpayers owe Larry Smith a legal defense unless he were acting on Mayor Favre’s behalf. Otherwise he was way outside the statutory duties of his office playing code enforcement officer. Trent Favre is City Attorney, not taxpayer funded legal aid.

  21. I dont feel it is any of their official duties to correct him. If it is out of bounds it is an ethic question for the State to answer.

    1. Pissed, Thanks for putting me in check. You are absolutely correct, it’s the job of the ethics people at the state.

  22. The only way to address the perceived bad behavior is at the voting ballot or by the proper state authorities.

  23. His legal defense would be on his nickel. His only authority is threw the minutes of the meetings. On the street he is no different from any other citizen. Campaigning on low taxes then giving us a huge increase will beat him in four years, Kyle is ready.

  24. Doug please post the Facebook post I sent you that Larry shared before the election…all will be offended by his racist view of the Democratic Party and some of its members. It will show his true colors!!!

  25. Less than quorum gatherings of public officials:
    google: courts.ms.gov./images/opinions/CO124497.pdf
    ruling September 7, 2017

      1. Stupid,
        I don’t know if you were in attendance at Tuesday’s Council meeting, or watched remotely on facebook, but David Wells of Ward 6, spoke at Public Forum, and pretty much nailed it to Council as to the major problem in the city which he claims has affected the taxpayer the most.
        Mr. Wells said he wanted a commitment from the Council that going forward there will be more “accountability” from elected officials and city employees.
        He listed all of the public funds that were deliberately misappropriated by the past administration:
        The $500,000 loan at the First Bank to cover Fillingame not paying the city’s garbage pick up fees to Solid Waste, even though the citizens of Bay St. Louis had sent their payments to City Hall as part of their utility bills. No one ever found out what he did with the money. It was $358,000.
        Who paid for that? Not Fillingame. The citizens had to pay off that loan. They were held accountable even though in good faith they had sent their $$$$ to City Hall to be forwarded to Solid Waste.
        The transfer of a restricted Department of Justice Police Grant into the General Fund in 2011 by Fillingame without authorization of Council. Who paid for that? The citizens. It was taken out of your General Operating Fund which is supposed to be for general city business. And it has not been paid back to the General Fund to my knowledge. They could sure use it right now.
        The $11,000 audit the Department of Justice ordered in order to find the money and determine how it was to be placed by in the restricted fund. Who was held accountable for that? the citizens.
        Now $12,000 in late payments to the State Department of Revenue for sales tax that wasn’t sent to the state. I won’t ask the same boring question. You paid for that too.
        I think Mr. Wells had a total of over $800,000 of misappropriations that the unbeknowing citizens have had to pay for instead of the Council making those who handled the money on a day to day basis accountable by revoking their bonds. That’s the surety bonds the citizens purchase to protect them from underhanded or incompetent individuals. Money wasted. Never used. Just stick to John Q. Public.
        All of this is the result of NO ONE EVER BEING HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS. That’s because, as Wells said, “yall have us, your “captive audience” to pick of the tab, and keep on going.
        So, I would say, the “problem” is ACCOUNTABILITY, AND MR. WELLS WANTS THAT TO CHANGE!!
        As he said, “we could have all accomplished a lot for the city with that $800,000.00.
        But you didn’t. They just used you as the bail bondsman for themselves and their employees.
        Smith’s situation is going to be different. The person he threatened on Social Media has hired their own attorney.
        Perhaps the citizens will take on the issue of ACCOUNTABILITY themselves and actually get some results.

        1. I watched also. Ms. Lana, didn’t past Council noticed Bond companies? I was told that Mr. Rafferty’s insurance about wrong house was put to. Don’t new Council have to vote to continue what they voted on?

  26. Great review. Yes transparency is something that must be monitored more closely. The Sun Herald has all but abandoned us again and the Sea Coast Echo only reports after the fact what is politically correct. This leaves us on our own to monitor political behavior.

  27. I called 4 vendors that I’ve bought from in the Bay,at various functions, in the past 6 months & not ONE HAS LIABILITY INS.There are a number of surveys going on this weekend, none scientific but every bit as valid as other data. There is a survey taking place at the Three Rivers Art Festival asking random 400 artists if they have liability insurance. Another survey will be going around in several random neighborhoods in the Bay asking what kink of shopping they do in the Bay & how many go across the bridge. There are no grants involved in this, nor politicians, just cousins because I’ve had enough.

  28. Going back & watching the 11/7 Council meeting again, to make sure that I not only have my facts straight, but that I’m not visiting the Twilight Zone, along with an email received from the Ward 2 Councilman, nothing has changed except that Kathleen is banned. The “transient vendor” ordinance will only apply to certain areas & “vendors” not , crab fest, Depot District non profits, any other non-profit events, or Mayor designated “special events”. The new Mayor can grant “special event” permits to whomever he wishes, whenever he wishes, just like the old Mayor. There’s no limit to how many “special events” someone or some bar has, just like the last argument we had.

  29. Michelle,
    You are correct it started with the last City Attorney. He operated on our dime on our behalf for years without the proper Insurance in place. It took him and Les nearly a year of defiance before he got it even though he was responsible for over seeing other sub contractors compliance.

    City Insurance was just a recommendation to Les and his appointed attorney. They let workers comp and other policies lapse without payment and even tried to cover it up.

    There was a car club renting the harbor for over a year without event insurance or even a rental fee for their personal use. As usual they say that it was to benefit the public not themselves.

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