Let’s talk methane recovery and Peter Butler Jr. as we tie a few more things together: A River Birch Landfill / Jefferson Parish Corruption Update

Folks there is one document that my gabby cousin Slabb O’Leak laid on me that merits special attention because it relates to this ridiculously good post Whitmergate authored for Slabbed back in December 2010, which I have made sticky today for everyone’s use and reference.  You see when the politicos divided up their turf with respect to the River Birch Landfill everything was fair game and that would included the methane recovery contract, the main subject of ‘Gate’s post.

None of this is new, of course, and we’ve hashed it out more than a few times but the Butlers, Peter Sr. and Jr. are central characters in the River Birch narrative for Peter Sr was Jim Ward’s lawyer, until that is the FBI raided River Birch’s HQ after which Butler reportedly ceased practicing law.  Jr is board attorney at West Jeff Medical Center and has been a recurring character in our narrative whether Louisiana or Nova Scotia Canada.

Forgotten in the narrative is the Parish had existing contracts for all these services that were publicly bid in accordance with applicable state law at the Parish’s landfill.  Waste Management’s suit against the Parish and River Birch Landfill has gotten all the headlines but WM was not the only people unhappy with the way a solicitation for the disposal of woody waste morphed into an all-encompassing comprehensive waste disposal contract with River Birch that required the Parish to close their landfill and this is where we start today with the following dynamite document on that exact topic: Continue reading “Let’s talk methane recovery and Peter Butler Jr. as we tie a few more things together: A River Birch Landfill / Jefferson Parish Corruption Update”

Enter now into Slabbed’s House of Pain as my gabby cousin Slabb O’Leak sez they ain’t no damn figment of my imagination!

Indeed folks Slabb O’Leak lives! Click the pic to get the PDF because when the subject is garbage, “transparency” was not in the middle name…..

Will the children on the Jefferson Parish Council ever learn? Waste Management sues to block IESI deal.

It should be noted the Young Administration tried to do the right thing before being overruled by the Parish Council.

Waste Management sues Jefferson Parish to block IESI contract to run parish dump. ~ Paul Rioux, The Times Picayune


The Times Picayune tackles a topic that has appeared here many times: A why Gwen Bollotte should have been fired years ago update.

In our coverage of Jefferson Parish Government we’ve run across the name of former Jefferson Parish CFO Gwen Bolotte a few times, normally with me expressing the opinion she needed to be fired for not doing her job as Parish Finance Director.  I termed her a doormat in fact and that is a good description of her job performance in both the Performing Arts fiasco and the Parish’s ham handed dealings with Waste Management in trying to cancel the contract with them so that the Parish’s garbage could be hauled to the River Birch Landfill at considerably more costs to parish residents.  I mention this because Bob Ross has a curious story in today’s Times Picayune that allows John Young and Chris Roberts to capitalize on Bolotte’s departure for purely self-serving public relations purposes. Roberts using this issue is particularly sickening given he employes the Master of Disaster Deano Bonano as a council aid at a nice 6 figure salary despite Bonano deserving the same fate as Bolotte. Instead Roberts recycled him from John Young’s chop shop.  First lets visit with Ross and his story for the Sunday Picayune:

Bolotte’s decision is more troubling, Roberts said, given her position as chief financial officer in Parish President John Young’s administration.

“Gwen is a CPA. She has a fiduciary duty to hold her ground in certain situations. I would expect our CFO — and I’ve told this to John already — that if she’s put in a compromising position that she knows may or may not be in the best interest of the parish, that she make a decision to stand up and say: ‘We have questions about this and I’m not comfortable, and we need further documentation.'”

Turning a “blind eye” to Whitmer’s order, as Roberts described Bolotte’s reaction, was not in Jefferson’s best interests. “That’s a real problem,” he said. “How many time have you heard her say over the years, ‘I was instructed to do that by my superiors.'”

Young generally agreed with Roberts’ assessment.

“Hindsight is 20-20, but if she had questions, she shouldn’t have processed the check,” he said recently, before Bolotte announced her retirement. “I can tell you this: We made sure Gwen knows that nothing will be paid without proper documentation. That will not happen again. Also, nothing will be paid without accounting doing the proper checks and balances.”

Both men act as if there was not an existing policy to never pay expenses without documentation in Jefferson Parish and of course there was and is such a policy. Continue reading “The Times Picayune tackles a topic that has appeared here many times: A why Gwen Bollotte should have been fired years ago update.”

Chronic Coulorphobia: It’s Getting Real Scary. A Lockemuptight guest post

George "Backroom Deal" Peterson

Everyone foolishly thought landfill activist and District 3 candidate, George Peterson, was going to let his previous clownish attack on the Citizens for Good Government, for their mentioning excessive Council campaign contributions, simmadownnow. Who would have thought the landfill activist would turn his criticism and insults up several notches and accuse the CCFG of being “ladies lacking common sense” to their faces.

Well, it wasn’t the ladies’ angelic faces which changed after Mr.Peterson’s tirade. Mr.Peterson’s earlier clownish appearance, which grew scary at the previous Council meeting, began to take on a much more sinister look as audience members again began to have coulorphobic anxiety. Councilman at Large (pun intended) Chrissy Roberts seemed to enjoy seeing the CCFG get roasted over and over as Peterson repeated his “ladies lacking common sense” insult again and again. BOYS AND GIRLS IT WAS PREMEDITATED, PREMATURE TRICK OR TREAT ON THE CCFG. The CFGG’s main Inspector General proponent, President Young,who had left the building earlier to catch a flight to D.C. must have experienced burning ears himself in route, as the Council of Clowns had also sprung an earlier Pearl Harbor attack on MIA Young and his entire administration fleet. Continue reading “Chronic Coulorphobia: It’s Getting Real Scary. A Lockemuptight guest post”

Acute Council Coulrophia Epidemic, Epicenter District 3: A Lockemuptight guest post.

For the lucky citizens who were not in attendance at the August 31, 2011 Jefferson Parish Council meeting you should be counting your lucky stars. Many attendees got acutely ill as it seems longtime Waggaman civic activist, George Peterson, is himself  possibly showing signs of becoming another scary Council Clown.

For those unfamiliar with George Peterson a short review is in order. George has been the ever so valiant Waggaman citizen who for years  at Council meetings had criticized District 3 Councilman Byron Lee for not spending the majority of River Birch’s $700,000 landfill mitigation fund on the citizens of Waggaman. Especially those citizens and respiratory sufferers living in close proximity to the onerous, odorous River Birch landfill.

 However, a few weeks ago Mr.Peterson himself became a candidate for Council District 3. Shortly thereafter, during a Council ‘s heated debate with members of the CFFG,  involving the new contract to operate the JP landfill expansion,, Mr. Peterson started to show signs of  clownishness. Mr. Peterson ranted  on how the JP landfill was mismanaged by CDM contractors,  who oversee the operators by treating the foul odors and scaring the birds away, and endorsed IESI to manage the new expansion. He also stated how all the foul odor was solely coming from the JP landfill and definitely not from the the River Birch dump. So Mr.Peterson, if what you say is true what was the intention and purpose of River Birch’s $700,000 mitigation fund? Continue reading “Acute Council Coulrophia Epidemic, Epicenter District 3: A Lockemuptight guest post.”

Just another day in the state ethics board neighborhood….

Screen Capture Courtesy of the Mississippi Informer / mississippiinformer.net/mississippiinformer

With our last post examining the ethics of a local ethics professor generating such interest a second post on the general topic is certainly in order.  IMHO one of the most thankless public service jobs has to be as a non political staffer at your local State Ethics Administration.  Both Louisiana and Mississippi’s are fairly ineffective by design of the political class and indeed just a year ago the Mississippi Business Journal called out Ben Stone, chair of the Mississippi Ethics Commission for blatant double-dealing. Along those same lines it appears as if the Louisiana Ethics Commission is routinely neutered by the courts and/or the legislature but the folks at the Louisiana Ethics Administration has Mississippi beat by miles in the transparency department as a few clicks on their website gets you the meeting agendas in advance. Website like that are favorite of the journalistic class for good reason.

So today I take a reader tip and click away and we find a clue that the insurance portion of what would become known as the Jefferson Parish Corruption Scandal is still percolating away as the various slow motion wheels of government grind, cuss and discuss Mr Scott Fontenot and Fontenot and Associates. Names such as Tim Coulon, Tim Whitmer, Wally Pontiff among others also occupy this general vicinity of the scandal. I’ll add that I have reason to believe the federal grand jury has also taken a look at Fontenot so there is a reasonable basis to surmise he may be in bigger trouble than the potential $210,000 in fines plus forfeitures.

Along those lines the last council meeting as portrayed thus far on Slabbed deal with garbage as the Parish awarded the new landfill contract to IESI despite the fact their bid was more expensive than Waste Management’s and that indeed was a big deal. Discussed both here in comments and elsewhere was the redundant hiring of a Parish Council Legal Analyst, the brainchild of the ethically challenged, bucktoothed  interim councilman Mike Thomas. But my mind is open to the possibility the most underhanded double deal of them all was the selection of Coventry for the Parish’s health insurance.  I suspect the evaluation committee scores for that contract would be interesting reading. Continue reading “Just another day in the state ethics board neighborhood….”

Today is G day in Jefferson Parish. Garbage/Landfill contract to be let at todays council meeting

Did someone tell me the lobbyists for Jefferson Parish and IESI are one in the same and involve someone with the last name of Coulon? I thought so.

Godspeed to the M&M sisters at today’s meeting and for holding the crooks on the council feet to the fire.


BREAKING: Mini-me Chris Roberts disses the M&M sisters and Citizens for Good Government. A Jefferson Parish Political Corruption Scandal update.

Poor Mini-me does not appear to like having his bullshit called by the M&M sisters. The following is from a hot off the press CFGG email blast which deals with the bid for operating the Jefferson Parish landfill. ~ sop

Supporters of Good Government:

I have been a participant in an email correspondence chain with Councilman Chris Roberts, which began with my email to him with the Subject, “Has the Council scheduled a review meeting for RFP 0227?”

Citizens for Good Government considers Councilman Robert’s latest response to us to be rude and offensive, and I therefore defended CFGG in the following email sent to him today:


SUBJECT: Response to Councilman Roberts’ email Re: Has the Council scheduled a review meeting for RFP 0227

Dear Councilman Roberts:

Thank you for responding to my email. The purpose of my email to you was to remind you that it was YOU who suggested an open meeting to review the evaluations of RFP 0227 to select a firm to run our Jefferson Parish landfill after the Waste Management contract expires. The following is a quote from you at the June 29th Council meeting concerning the Landfill contract: “There is a possibility if time constraints require it that we may very well have to address openly this contract at another brief meeting which would occur sometime prior to the July 27th meeting.” Since you suggested such an open meeting, we wonder why you are finding fault with us for agreeing with you that such a meeting would be desirable. We merely added that we felt it was essential. Continue reading “BREAKING: Mini-me Chris Roberts disses the M&M sisters and Citizens for Good Government. A Jefferson Parish Political Corruption Scandal update.”

The long awaited public hearing on the River Birch contract evaluation is at hand. Be there tomorrow at 10AM sharp

Word is that Chris Roberts will be demonstrating early morning potty training techniques for those that show early at 9:00.

Seriously folks we’ve written about this topic ad nauseum and then some as the Postlethwaite & Netterville report prepared for the Parish was disseminated publically while the far more shadowy report for River Birch, which has thus far not seen the light of day, that was prepared by Baton Rouge Economist Loren C Scott trumpets big cost savings by closing the JPL but provides little detail. In a sense this is the ol’ dog and pony show at its worst as I suspect the Loren Scott report somehow fails to mention the Dutchie Connick file or how Team River Birch intended to charge off the almost half million in ca$h they paid Henry Mouton to shill for closing other area landfills. If is OK we’ll save the suspense for tomorrow as we eagerly await the report on the meeting from the Citizens for Good Government.

If there is one thing we’re good at here at Slabbed it is the art of thinking dirty and I mean that in the finest tradition of the auditing profession as we’re good at making connections and ferreting out conflicts of interest. It is part of the reason the good guys like reading us. I mention this because Paul Rioux at the T-P made what at first blush would appear to be a small error in the first sentence of his latest story on the topic of tomorrow’s meeting. The error is not small though as appearances are often deceiving as I now shamelessly use it to segue to one big distinction between an economist and a member of the Certified Public Accounting profession: Continue reading “The long awaited public hearing on the River Birch contract evaluation is at hand. Be there tomorrow at 10AM sharp”