Runoff elections bring more change to Hancock and Harrison Counties while Jackson County reverts to the mean

Depending on the November general election here in Hancock County we may end up with a completely new Board of Supervisors but at the minimum four of the five Supervisors will be new now that Sup Tony Wayne Ladner was eliminated in yesterday’s runoff election. Meantime in Harrison County there is a new Sheriff in town to go with three new County Supervisors and Superintendent of Education.

We also had runoff elections in Jackson County with two County Sups in runoffs. Before I link Anita I’d like to revisit what was the prevailing thoughts on the primary elections dating to late July and the confab between elements of the media including Slabbed and the SRHS retirees. While there was no candidate promotion at that meeting a very frank discussion was held about all the candidates for the County Board of Supervisors as well as what people thought was their best guess at board turnover, such speculation also periodically appearing here on Slabbed in comments. Everyone pretty much agreed there would be no more than three seats change with two seats being the more likely number. No one saw what would come on August 4th, with two Sups losing outright and two more being forced into runoffs, especially given the overall low voter turnout raising the possibility of four new Supervisors. For those wanting change the Primary election exceeded expectations. After the runoff elections my mathematically oriented mind immediately thought of mean reversion to make sense of last night’s results:

Jackson County: Cumbest returns; Taylor wins; Ross advances ~ Anita Lee

I thought Sabrina Smith had Barry Cumbest on the ropes and he surprised us with a strong finish.  Political newcomer Sabrina Smith ran a spirited, grass roots campaign against an incumbent Supervisor that comes from a large Jackson County’s family that has been around for hundreds of years and took him to the wire.  She should be proud of the campaign she ran and to borrow and slightly change a football phrase she left it all on the campaign trail. Kudos to Ms. Smith.

Troy Ross advancing to the general election did not surprise me, especially since I was aware that he had the significant support among the SRHS retirees. You see folks people are motivated to vote for a number of reasons many of which are noble but mostly people vote their wallets. I disclosed the reason Sup Ross would win before the election here, specifically:

Ross supporters point to the fact he is a less divisive personality than Brodnax and that Ross will be able to more capably work with the new board to fix the myriad of problems the county faces.

Slabbed has had the privilege to report on this incredible story that involves the intersection of a major scandal with the fields of auditing, finance and the law, in the SRHS meltdown.  Even more significant is the political component in a group of people that cast aside personal differences to create a grassroots movement with a unified voice in the SRHS retirees. They have become a political power in Jackson County.

This group of folks and their determination to see justice done included picketing in the cold of winter and the worst of our summertime heat almost nonstop. This has gone on so long that the group has seen a few of its members die and yet more step up to post. I rather suspect these folks, despite the close bonds they have forged with each other, would much rather be inside in the air conditioning that manning a picket line in the 95 plus degree heat.

So think about the runoff from a retiree’s standpoint. Continue reading “Runoff elections bring more change to Hancock and Harrison Counties while Jackson County reverts to the mean”

Pro Bono Publico: Jackson County Sup District Four GOP Runoff on my mind

Folks the runoff between former Jackson County Sup Tommy Brodnax and current District Four Sup. Troy Ross is coming down to the wire and the race looks like it will be close based on my anecdotal observations visiting with folks in Jackson County.

I’ve heard the reasons why each man should be elected. Despite the fact most folks view this race as a stinker featuring two stinkers, the folks in District Four understand the importance that now attaches to this seat when the new Board is sworn in come January in light of the issues Jackson County faces.

I’m not going to list the downsides extensively on each candidate but Brodnax people correctly point out Ross is getting has received financial support from Harrison County’s Morris Strickland and that he was a patsy in the jail fleecing, a topic that Slabbed is now rolling out. There is merit to those points as well as the one Team Brodnax makes that he fought McKay on the jail and once he lost the fix was effectively in.

Ross supporters point to the fact he is a less divisive personality than Brodnax and that Ross will be able to more capably work with the new board to fix the myriad of problems the county faces. They also point out that Brodnax has his own past in Jackson County politics, some of it as unseemly as the jail.

Slabbed New Media will not be endorsing any candidates in the runoff election though we highly encourage everyone to go vote a week from tomorrow. Meantime I’m more than happy to let the Ross and Brodnax partisans have their say in comments.

BREAKING: Scott Walker wants out early

But first some lovely music:

Scott Walker wants to serve remainder of prison sentence in halfway house ~ Margaret Baker

He claims that home confinement would be fine too but before he goes back into the consulting business with a local sitting politician we need to hash out a thing or two starting with that brand spanking new Jackson County Adult Detention Center from where the stench of a steaming pile of Maxwell-Walker scat still emanates. Jackson County still has too many CONsultants on the loose as it stands.

Consensus of Opinion: Time to replace Jackson County’s five supervisors

Retirees Protesting outside Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula May 29, 2015. Photo courtesy of SHRS Hopes Group on Facebook
Retirees Protesting outside Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula May 29, 2015. Photo courtesy of SHRS Hopes Group on Facebook

Singing River Health System retirees for some time now have been papering Jackson County with fliers with a simple message: Please help us clean house on August 4th.

We couldn’t agree more. The Jackson County supervisors must go. All five of them.

For months, they have been negligent when it comes to SRHS. At best, they didn’t know what was going on as the SRHS pension fund evaporated and hospital finances withered. And they may have known more than they’re letting on. Either way, they’ve worn out their welcome. Continue Reading…….

Private or Public? Building a Fiction ~ SRHS Watch Continue reading “Consensus of Opinion: Time to replace Jackson County’s five supervisors”

Guest Post: Maxine Ramsay | The citizens of Jackson County own the Singing River Hospital System.

To say I am thoroughly disgusted with the inactions and actions of the entire group of Jackson County Board of Supervisors is stating it mildly. Are they hoping that by kicking the can down the road, election time will arrive and people will forget about their inept disservice to Jackson County?

They have not performed the duties they were elected to uphold. It appears they are dragging their feet by not revealing what accountant Billy Guice has uncovered in reference to the Singing River Hospital pension rout. Supervisors and Guice are being paid by the taxpayers of Jackson County! Do they really think voters of their county believe their double-talk?

Is Board Attorney Paula Yancey advising supervisors NOT to report findings Guice has uncovered? If so, they need to fire her and listen to the public voice in order than an open, accountable, honest, transparent government work in Jackson County.

Supervisors Cumbest, Harris, Mangum, Ross and McKay, former Supervisors Barton and Brodnax, trustees and others all share part of the blame for this pension fiasco. Supervisors may not allow retirees ample time to speak or ask questions at board meetings but they cannot stop them from speaking out publicly, protesting and writing.

Jackson County voters are smarter than their supervisors give them credit. The supervisor’s Number 1 responsibility is honest representation to the citizens of Jackson County. But have they?

Maxine Ramsay

Signs of the times

So commenters on Slabbed wanted names named and the retirees were happy to oblige. Merci Beaucoup.

Retirees Protesting outside Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula May 29, 2015. Photo courtesy of SHRS Hopes Group on Facebook
Retirees Protesting outside Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula May 29, 2015. Photo courtesy of SRHS Hopes Group on Facebook

When it comes to the Jackson County Sups Molly Ivins immediately comes to mind

Welp, the online community here at Slabbed managed to cause a major shitstorm as we rang-out the old year in style:

SRHS trustee Morris Strickland lives in Biloxi, despite Jackson County residency rule ~ Anita Lee

When the reporter went to Strickland’s office, he said: “Get out of my office. Get out of my office. This is private property. Get out, get out, get out.… Let me call the cops.”

Who is this man, Morris Strickland that personally oversaw a major financial catastrophe that now would have Hospital retirees bankrupted? Before I answer that we must visit with this:

Jackson County supervisors looking into SRHS trustee’s residency, replacement possible ~ April Havens

Anita was kind enough to credit Slabbed, something the Times Picayune in New Orleans regularly does when warranted because after all, Slabbed is considered an authoritative news source around these parts but this really is too rich. April’s story is political spin as the Jackson County Board of Supervisors try to make it appear they are actually in front of their illegal trustee problem. In the process they also admit they knew about the problem for months and did nothing about it. I’m personally reminded of the late great Molly Ivins because I think it applies over Jackson County way in spades:

As they say around the Texas Legislature, if you can’t drink their whiskey, screw their women, take their money, and vote against ’em anyway, you don’t belong in office.

So who is Morris Strickland? I think RFP nailed it in comments myself: Continue reading “When it comes to the Jackson County Sups Molly Ivins immediately comes to mind”