For the second time the Sun Herald has called for a complete house cleaning at the Commission of Marine Resources, a subject which Slabbed has reserved judgment upon until very recently. With the release of the Horne CPA Group report on the internal control structure of the very troubled Department of Marine Resources it is abundantly clear the very people charged with overseeing the agency and its governance were completely derelict in the discharge of that duty. The taxpayers will get stuck with the bill.
Since the scandal broke the consistent theme from the Commission on Marine Resources has been a Sergeant Schultzian “I know nothing” and I think the gang is being 100% truthful saying that. It betrays the fact they were simple rubber stamps for Bill Walker. Later they continued in their role of lackey, this time for Phil Bryant as they conducted the charade of an open hiring process for DMR Executive Director that landed Jamie Miller at DMR.
Another word for a rubber stamp board, Godfather style, is “buffers” and that is the real purpose of the Commission on Marine Resources which is to give the man really responsible for the operation of State Government, the Governor, cover when his cronies are caught with their hands in the cookie jar. The Board members will point to the fact they are essentially volunteering their time to this state agency and that is true enough. However it is equally true they are an expensive bunch of volunteers to support with the taxpayer funded freebie deep sea fishing trips and all the other toys that also come with the turf.
This goes way beyond a money issue though money to fund the agency is certainly the topic de jour. The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, as it is currently structured, is constructed to fail. Since the Governor is really calling the shots, the Commission on Marine Resources should be eliminated, or a new board constructed and empowered to provide proper oversight free from political interference from Jackson save for the power of appointment. I am not so naive to think the latter will ever happen so the chop shop it is. There is no way this bunch of bumbling lackeys will ever regain the public’s trust.
Finally I’m certainly aware there is huge uncertainty among the worker bees at DMR, the vast majority of whom are still discharging their job duties at a high level despite the circus show like atmosphere iternerate to hosting monthly an oversight board of know nothing stooges. At this point in time there should be no reason the agency should not have a firm grasp of exactly where it stands financially. This needs to be clearly communicated to the employees so the uncertainty is minimized.
Mr. Bailey then added, “When I agreed to accept the position of CEO of EDCI on July 1(st), 2009, I knew there were many challenges that lie ahead. The continued minimization of cash burn at the EDCI level continues to be a top priority and many difficult decisions have been made to facilitate this initiative, including cutting overall EDCI corporate salaries by an average 19% as of July 1, 2009. As part of this initiative, I voluntarily reduced my salary by 33% and Matthew K. Behrent, EDCI’s VP of Corporate Development and Legal Counsel, agreed to reduce his salary by a like percentage. In regards to the EDC business, we continue to pursue negotiations with the unions representing our Hannover, Germany workforce with the goal of securing wage concessions in order to right-size our overall cost structure.”
Mr Bailey earlier cancelled his entire option gun in response to deteriorating business conditions. You don’t take half your bonus when your employees are being laid off, rather you take NO BONUS. It is called LEADERSHIP. It is a core concept in the world of small business. It exists in the world of publicly traded stocks. The trick is finding them.
Point of disclosure: I am long this company. My posting to Greenbackd on EDCIs breakup value is not a recommendation for others to take a position in this company’s stock. Investing in individual issues is a risky endeavor.
FORGET HEALTH CARE, IF THE CRAZIES WANNA LOCK AND LOAD LET ‘EM TAKE A BEAD ON CORPORATE EXECUTIVE PAY
Ever wonder why you just paid $2.75 a gallon at the discount Kroger pump? Oil went from $145.00 a barrel in July 2008, down to $34.00 in December. And, when the recession hit, domestic consumption went way, way down. So . . . how does this supply and demand thing work anyway . . . shouldn’t the price be really cheap right now?
Well, here’s a possible answer that the feds are saying they’re gonna look into. There are these super rich corporations, investment bankers and hedge funds that manipulate the commodities markets, and make money from us by keeping the prices of things we gotta have, like gasoline, artificially high. In other words, they flip the supply and demand rule upside down, and hijack the market. A Los Angeles Times Business column Money and Company reported about 30 days ago that a report was coming out soon that will show oil traders, aka “speculators” are to blame for the oil prices’ spike ups in 2008. Imagine the profits – let’s say you and buy all the oil contracts we can get our hands on at $50.00 p/b and by the time we sell, we’ve spiked the market to $145.00.
So who are these traders or “speculators?” If you ever saw the documentary film “Enron: the Smartest Guys in the Room” you’d know. Watch this You Tube clip, or if you’re really intrigued, watch the whole film some time. (Personally, I think it ought to be part of the core curriculum in every high school). There’s a scene in the You Tube clip where some Enron energy traders are laughing about manipulating California’s electricity grids to jack prices up. If you wanna cut straight to the chase, start watching at about the 2 minute mark.
Right now there’s a lot of grousing by corporate execs over this Citigroup oil trader, and his bonus pay for the fine work he did for Citigroup in 2008-2009. The execs claim the government is unlawfully tampering with his pay package, and illegally taking away his “earnings.” This Continue reading “Juriscribe checks in with a great post on executive pay. Lesson of the financial crisis #1: Why good corporate governance matters to everyone.”