And while I’ve been gone we have nooses on the loose at Stone High School while down in the Bay, Hizzoner and his new City Clerk decided to skip last night’s recessed meeting of the Bay City Council. Meantime Rick gave us the backstory on the change at Bay City prosecutor. And that just scratches the surface really.
Looking ahead this is the last week of the regular high school season here in Mississippi for classes 4A to 1A. The playoff brackets are out and it is certainty the Rocks will host the winner of Friday night’s Sumrall-Green County game on November 4th. Because the playoff orderings in Region 5 and 6 are not set there would be a total of 5 possible teams that would be there in Round 2, which would mean road games against Mendenhall, Northeast Jones or Quitman or home games against McComb or Lawrence County depending on who advances. Assuming Poplarville and SSC advance in their brackets, the November 18th match-up at Brother Phillip Stadium in the Bay should be quite the game. Very good teams in Florence and West Lauderdale round out the district winners of Regions 5 and 6 with one of those two teams likely to advance to South State in the other bracket.
In other news one of Slabbed’s inaugural topics, insurance claims handling after Hurricane Katrina hits the U.S. Supreme Court as arguments are scheduled in Ex Rel Rigsby on November 1. On tap the Court will resolve the three way split among the appellate Circuits regarding busting the case seal in False Claims Act cases. The 6th Circuit stands alone requiring auto dismissal if the case seal is broken while the rest have varying standards that would require the dismissal. Here in the 5th Circuit, cases are dismissed “only if the seal violation caused actual harm to the Government” pursuant to a balancing test. Joining what is viewed as the most conservative appellate Circuit in that approach is the most liberal in the 9th Circuit. When the time comes we’ll have a link for those that want to listen in on the oral arguments.
As I observed on Twitter, time for Ru$ty to part with $ome corporate ca$h. Hopefully it will be put to good use cutting that pesky NFIP deficit the insurers caused by their illicit post Katrina claims handling processes.
The troubled Flood Insurance program is billions of dollars in debt and the Biggert-Waters Act, designed as it was by the Insurance Industry for the sole benefit of the insurance industry guarantees that the billions of dollars in wind claims private insurers such as State Farm dumped on the NFIP after Hurricane Katrina will be repaid by the NFIP ratepayers instead of the large companies that socialized their contractual obligations under their insurance policies that dumped them on the US Treasury. Unfortunately the people of this area were sold out to the insurance industry by our own politicians, who now claim ignorance of the impacts of the bill upon which they voted Aye.
In related news Alpert checked in yesterday with a report on the FEMA pilot program on adjusting flood maps to give credit for locally built, non-accredited levees. This seems a risky proposition to me due to the fact ongoing maintenance of these systems has been historically neglected plus filling in marshlands for development is bad for the environment. What this area needs is smarter development that does not impact or alter the floodplain, not more levees.
My grandfather started State Farm and built to what it is today. I know from personal experience that Ed Jr. worked is way up from the bottom and became CEO because of his merits and not his name, just as his father, my uncle, Ed Sr. did.
You can write what you want about the company and the lawsuits that have been brought against them. All major corporations, especially insurance companies with the recent natural disasters our country has faced over the past decade, are going to have lawsuits brought against them from unhappy customers. We live in a society where litigation and the suing of large corporations for personal profit is the norm.
You can take shots at the company all day long. But do you know Ed Rust? Do you know what kind of man he is? Do you know how much time and money he spends in giving back to his community, his country and his policyholders? No. You sit in front of your computer searching for negative things to write about people and companies. Maybe you should do a little research into the positive things that State Farm and my family has done. Take a look at the millions of lives and families that State Farm has helped over the years. If you want to take shots at insurance companies, take a look at the real bad guys, not the companies that lead the way in customer service and policyholder satisfaction. Or does that go against the view of your little world or your life’s purpose of digging up dirt and screaming out through your little blog, “Gotcha!”
I love these snakes taking credit for throwing a scrap back to the populace after letting their insurance benefactors loot the NFIP dry, sticking the bill for the massive fraud on the little people in the process. Say what you want about Gene Taylor folks but he never put the interest of millionaire insurance executives from Illinois above the interest of his constituents.
By this time last year the unraveling of the Mississippi DMR had begun as we rapidly approach the one year anniversary of several important events. I’m not gonna rehash them today but I need to hook up with one contributor in order to finalize a comprehensive post on the topic that will appear soon.
Moving right along I received a reader email worried Slabbed has been subpoenaed because of our DMR coverage. At the risk of sounding like a broken record from last January the answer is no and I do not expect to receive any. That said I have heard from multiple sources the Auditor’s office investigators made sure certain peeps knew they took a very dim view on anyone involved in the scandal speaking with Slabbed. That I submit, is a major compliment on the voodoo we do here on the Slabb.
In the bad news department the long promised and not delivered “Part 2” of my exploration of Aaron Broussard’s relationship with the media and First Bank and Trust ain’t happening. Instead what I intend to do is break the pdf files down into smaller size files and post the entire Broussard files project for everyone to see in all its glory. I’d look for that beginning tomorrow.
Finally, it is time we tackled some old topics anew in the National Flood Insurance Program, Wind Claims Dumping and certain insurance commishes that clearly need a seeing eye dog. In short State Farm is headed back to the Slabb for further examination.
With due respect to Anita Lee I’ll let my former partner in blog go first:
Checked PACER to see if anything came up as the Rigsby’s rested their case…Sure nuf’ SF filed a motion for judgment as a matter of law under Rule 50 – just a docket entry…said the Court heard arguments and took the matter under advisement…did not say what the law was…
(1) In General. If a party has been fully heard on an issue during a jury trial and the court finds that a reasonable jury would not have a legally sufficient evidentiary basis to find for the party on that issue, the court may:
(A) resolve the issue against the party; and
(B) grant a motion for judgment as a matter of law against the party on a claim or defense that, under the controlling law, can be maintained or defeated only with a favorable finding on that issue.
(2) Motion. A motion for judgment as a matter of law may be made at any time before the case is submitted to the jury. The motion must specify the judgment sought and the law and facts that entitle the movant to the judgment.
I do not see Judge Ozerden tossing this suit mid trial and this rule 50 motion seems like a standard defense tactic. Turns out Cori Rigsby did not take the stand yesterday so the Plaintiffs rested their case and State Farm took the floor with a Woody:
Less satisfied with her insurance coverage is homeowner Jeanna Weber, a 25-year resident of Fortescue.Weber says she’s frustrated, tired of calling her insurance company without any response. She has been calling since October, she said, but to no avail.
What a way to introduce yourselves folks as Team Walker has lawyered up with State Farm’s Mississippi law firm Baker Donelson, one of the prototypical sleazebag large law firms we’ve profiled on the pages through the years. I personally have no use for 99% of people that do that first initial middle name thang as it betrays a certain amount of pompacity that is a personal turn off but they are now Team Walker.
No word yet on whether Bernie Grimm will be hooking up with Baby Walker.
A quick word on the recent DMR / Rigsby chatter. I can tell you I had no clue until it showed up in comments yesterday but I can now confirm hindsight reveals they had a sense of humor about Slabbed’s coverage of Scott Walker’s drinking habits. If they became spillionaires that’d be fair game but as a general rule we try to steer clear of guilt by association. There is a certain irony to Walker lawyering up with the same firm that has worked to crush his nieces that I hope is lost on no one. I personally think Cori and Kerrie have the far better lawyers.