Friday, October 23, 2015

The Web at Renaissance

A picture is worth a thousand words so JJ decided to explain the Mattiace-Costco-MDA web in a picture:

Click on image to enlarge


Anonymous said...

So that's how Buttler Snow gets all those clients

Anonymous said...

So what? That's the way the world of business works.

Anonymous said...

BS has so many they even do conflict checks at that firm?

Anonymous said...

@9:36 - private business is different than the government (MDA) supplementing private government. The Governor helping friends and family does not equal private business.

Anonymous said...

Kingfish I thought we lived in a republican controlled state---this looks more like Chicago style politics.

Anonymous said...

9:40 AM, what 9:36 meant to say was that's the way the world of Mississippi Republican government kickbacks to business works.

Anonymous said...

And of course the money flows back to Bryant

Anonymous said...

What's the status of the project. The last I heard per the Northside Sun, they probably were not going to come.----I figured with all the lawyers that live close to the COSTCO proposed site, there would be lawsuits filed. I wouldn't think that any involved with this deal would welcome a light shined on their shenanigans.

Anonymous said...

Lovely work. You went to all that trouble for nothing. No secrets revealed. No kickbacks. Positive growth for Mississippi. Why so personal? It is. You can't deny. Please reveal why? Were you caught up in the so-called web at some point?

Anonymous said...

Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to construct a cardboard-cutout Napoli.

Anonymous said...

9:36 - agree,
9:37 - what constitutes an conflict?
9:40 - get real, people hire and associate with "known quantities" to ensure things are handled with some degree of predictability.
9:50 - how does money flow back to Phil Bryant, is that an allegation?

This is an interesting, albeit simplistic association chart, but lacks many details, such as dates, individual associations and commodity flows.

Anonymous said...

@10:58 Keep drinking that Mattiace kool-aid...

Anonymous said...

Positive growth for Mississippi @10:28? The governor strong arming to benefit one law firm because his daughter works there. Tater benefiting one law firm because his on again off again contract worker works there. You have to love republican ideologies.

Anonymous said...

10:58, it's got to be personal (like the OH issue) or he's just doing it to goad those proven to be easily inflamed on this topic.

KF, you do some good work, but this is disappointing. (Still better than that OH "interview," though. So, progress!)

fortunatetail said...

This has nothing to do with Democrat or Republican. This is just corrupt local administration. The fact that it may be 'the way things are done' does not mean we should allow it. The shoe deal smells!

Anonymous said...

KF, have you heard anything to rebut the fast-approaching deadline Sarah Fowler cites in this article?

"The developer who hopes to build a Costco as part of the Renaissance expansion in Ridgeland and receive a $29.6 million tax rebate from the state has approximately nine months to buy land, build and complete a $98 million dollar project before his certificate expires and the rebate vanishes."

Absent some sort of an extension in the offing or an exception, that article came out over a month ago, so there are now fewer than 8 months left to purchase, build and hand over a certificate of completion in order for Mattiace to get his $29.6 mil back from the MDA. I don't see how it can get done, not to mention ongoing Corps of Engineers wetlands investigations, legal obstructions lodged by neighbors, etc. This would appear to be a most promising angle for those opposed to the development at that site. Wondering if you've seen any of this debunked or if there is reason to disbelieve this deadline is set in stone.

Anonymous said...

At the epicenter of all of this is former governor Waley Barbour who laid the groundwork for these ridiculous tax credits. Everyone is giving Deputy Phil way too much credit. And remember, Waley knew he was joining BS before he pardoned those criminals and left office --- it was a bigger plan than Deputy Phil could ever plot out.

Anonymous said...

Trying to create controversy out of this "web" chart is pretty far out there, even for the tin-foil-clad crowd on this site... If one of you Kingfish disciples were going to develop some property or - you know, contribute to the economy somehow - which law firm would you hire to represent you? Would you hire a local firm with attorneys with actual knowledge and experience, or would you hire a renegade sole practictioner (let's call him "Mill Bay") who's never worked on a large development project in his life but has nothing else to do with his time? Maybe he's somewhat familiar with the process because he has personally benefited from his family's participation in the same tax benefits (wink), but he's never done any work on any projects like that himself. Would you choose Mill Bay to represent you? Or I guess you could always hire a guy who represents slumlords and sues the city every chance he gets, but that wouldn't be very productive now, would it?

And the Governor? I imagine that guy is "tied in" to a whole bunch of big projects in the state. I bet he was somehow involved in that whole "Nissan" project, or maybe even the "Whole Foods" con too - someone should look into that crook! OMG I saw him at Char one time -- I bet he had probably even met the owners of Highland Village before!!!

You people kill me. How long did it take you to figure out this "web of deceit" and then you took the time to open MS Paint and draw it out? Go do something productive. Go dig up dirt on actual criminals or something. Sheesh.

Anonymous said...

This Republican VS Democrat crap is so tiresome. Personally, I HATE both parties. I regard them BOTH as being nothing more than TREASON MACHINES. And behind the facades and vote-getting strategies, there's probably no difference between the parties. They're all a bunch of whores and whoremongers.

The only possible difference, here, is that if Democrats had been the primary players, then after the "appropriation" of all those public monies, NOTHING WOULD HAVE BEEN BUILT.

Anonymous said...


Absent some sort of an extension in the offing or an exception, that article came out over a month ago, so there are now fewer than 8 months left to purchase, build and hand over a certificate of completion in order for Mattiace to get his $29.6 mil back from the MDA. I don't see how it can get done, not to mention ongoing Corps of Engineers wetlands investigations, legal obstructions lodged by neighbors, etc. This would appear to be aPLUM LOBBYING OPPORTUNITY for anyone wanting or needing to wet their beak. Like they say: "A deadline is a scheduled shakedown opportunity with a nicer name. Since when do bad things happen to properly connected people?" Option one: Leave the money on the table because the deadline can't be met. Option two: Change the rules using the friends and family plan. Like there is a choice.

Anonymous said...


Probably has published some good comments on how United Airlines putting on the "Chairman's Flight" (direct from Newark to Columbia South Carolina-one flight a week with a layover in Columbia between Thursday and Monday) is just more
tinfoiler nothing to see. It is a well known fact that executives resign in groups at all times for all reasons.

In China it is guanxi.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone even know why Mississippi has an attorney general or auditor?
It is ridiculous to see all these politicians running ads against public corruption but no one seems to do anything about it.
Only in Mississippi could a strip center mall with a big box disckount store be an economic development tourist attraction. Folks, get your hands out of the state treasury, no way is retail business economic development.

Anonymous said...

It seems like anyone who is involved in bringing Jackson and Mississippi to anywhere near the economic level of other states is assumed to be corrupt and/or immoral. This development will be good for many, many Mississippi citizens. Yes, the developers will make big money but we ordinary citizens have no way accomplish such big developments. you want the developments to "not happen" so no one gets anything? or do you want to let the developers do their thing so that we can profit as well?

Anonymous said...

PLEASE BRING Costco TO Pearl. Next to the Outlet Mall. Madison folks will drive to Pearl to get their cheap Wine & Cheese. Please, Please, Please. Love the Flowchart. Was it done in Visio?

Anonymous said...

I'm voting for the truck driver for Governor. He can't be worse than PB.

Anonymous said...

Is that you Karen?

Anonymous said...

If the Ridgeland polls carry the truck driver to 50%, then we'll know people are serious about this in Ridgeland. I suspect most residents condone what has been going on.

Anonymous said...

1:48, the fact is that plenty of "big developments" have already "been accomplished". There was no real need for any more. As it is, "big developments" in Jackson are languishing - being snapped-up by my more unsavory coreligionists in the Northeast, at pennies-on-the-Dollar.

Even at those bargain-basement prices, I have to wonder how the rag-pickers are going to make any money. Maybe they've got it figured out. Maybe they only THINK they've got it figured out. Maybe they're sly kombinators and gonivim, back East, and in Californa - adept at jacking-up the rents and then flipping to hapless institutional investors. Here, maybe they're about to meet their Waterloo. I wish them luck.

They're going to need all the luck they can get, because local developers are a bunch of Norma Desmonds, hell-bent on filming Salome, standing "on the stairway at the palace", oblivious to the dearth of need - or even demand - for their product, "And after this Fabulous Lifestyle Center, we'll build another, and another, and ANOTHER...".

Norma Desmond had her butler, Max (and oil wells pumping... PUMPING...), to prop her up. Here, the Developers have public monies to enable their senseless and never-ending cycle of construction and obsolescence. In the absence of significant growth of population or wealth, every time a new mall/lifestyle center/celebration marketplace/chic-urban-whatchamacallit gets built, another one dies. Whole sectors of the metro have become derelict, because of the senseless construction of NEW sectors.

For anyone from the outside world, attempting to invest here, I would sum-up the local commercial real estate climate with the old saying, HIER IST KEIN WARUM.

Anonymous said...

" way is retail business economic development."

Precisely, October 23, 2015 at 1:43 PM, why you should maybe just read along and not comment. K?

Burke said...

Nice piece, 2:52. Truly. Reaching some on the Norma Desmond stuff, but a man's reach, etc. Keep it up!

There is cronyism here (duh), but is that new or will it ever change? While we're getting rid of cronyism, let's eradicate adultery and fantasy football, too. Best of all, let's rid ourselves of hypocrisy and behave more like the Nazarene.

Anonymous said...

Love the extent the apologists will go to in order to justify a massive state $27-$29 million dollar kickback of taxpayer mopeny into the pockets of a private developer.

Boo hoo, boo hoo, if we don't kick Mattice back the green then he won't build it. Boo hoo, boo hoo.

Anonymous said...

Some real crazies in here... One practicing for a stage play and one crying and lying. I'm going to type this real slow - it is not a kickback. It does not go into anyone's pockets. It especially doesn't take anything out of yours. Why anyone wants to be a developer is beyond me. Most of the dollars go back into the deal. And then they have crazies like you weighing in. You're wrong. Now, go cry some more.

Anonymous said...

Semantics ... it is a kickback. Goes back into the deal as taxpayer funded corporate welfare.

Anonymous said...

Aw, see, 5:31, you read too fast. And I typed real slow. You're never going to get it.

Anonymous said...

I am so disappointed! I have listened to the Republican leadership do a very admirable job of calling Initiative 42 out on the fact that it will take the control of massive tax dollars out of the hands of the legislature and put it in the hands of 4 judges. How is what the Governor and MDA doing on the Renaissance development any different? The discretion that they have given one appointed official is mind boggling. They are totally ignoring our legislators who have said the "cultural retail attraction" tourism grant is DONE and are allowing one appointed official to continue to give away our hard earned tax dollars to 3 successful and powerful developers. If these developers can't build this development on the original site per the original application, without all the special favors and exceptions being granted AFTER THE LAW HAS TERMINATED, then they simply need to NOT build it. Please, please please somebody somewhere have the courage and the character to stop the madness! I will never understand why the legislature tolerates this; their authority is being totally usurped, democrat or republican, and I, for one, find it very disconcerting.

Anonymous said...

6:39 pm Let me type slowly for you!

Economic development is about stimulating the economy.
That is done through bringing new jobs and tax revenues to the community.

Construction jobs and any associated revenues are not ongoing. Perhaps, you've heard of " boom/bust"? And, too often the construction jobs are not community hires but are people brought in from elsewhere.

If taxpayers are paying for any part of construction costs and giving up tax revenues, they essentially are forced to be investors who do not get to share profits.

The " credits" result in an increased profit for the business and the developer.

Once upon a time, businesses had to get institutional financing or financial backing from investors to do their start ups. Lenders and investors assessed the risks and decided whether or not to back or invest based on their profit potential. Taxpayers do not have that luxury. We can only hope to defeat the elected official who didn't do due diligence in making sure we got more than we gave up!

Do you get it now?

Anonymous said...

6:08, thank you for that. But the fairy tale ended with the downfall in 2008/2009. Therefore, things had to change and incentives had to be created in order to stimulate the economy and to keep previously successful companies afloat and to provide for new startups and development. This is not unique to Mississippi.

Anonymous said...

This 'web' is absolutely the biggest crap you've posted in a while, KF. And the comments by the various economic specialists here also show the extent some folks can go to show their ignorance.

First, nowhere in this 'web' picture do you show the legislature. That is the group that established the 'economic development' program of providing this tax benefit to developers. The MDA is nothing but the agency the administers the program. Once it was created, and the developer applied for the program, MDA did its job and provided the funding mechanism. Wonder what all these 'kickback naysayers' would have to say if the MDA, or the Governor, was able to approve these deals or disapprove them - only on a whem. They there would be reasonable bitching toward them. But in this case, the MDA is shown as the middle of the web when all it has done is provide a program for an applicant in accordance with the law.

Second - the fact that the Governor has a child that works for a private firm does not establish a link such as you are trying to show here - and certainly not what some of the comments here imply in the way of kickbacks and favorable terms. The Gov's daughter is entitled to be her own person and pursue her own career - and should not be restricted by the fact that her parent is the Governor.

Third - Butler Snow is in the middle of this project because that is the kind of legal work they specialize in (among, of course, others.) And so are many other firms in the state - and they all spend plenty of time and effort maintaining their position on behalf of their clients.

To throw around the incriminating words like "kickbacks" and "schemes" that some like to say when a developer uses programs established by law and available to any other individual shows either absolute ignorance and bias.

And, by the way, I don't really care for any of the groups or individuals shown on this 'web picture'.

The World Is Out To Get Me said...

Sounds like Victor Cavett has found the JJ Blog and is sharing his thoughts and high-octane imagination here as well as serving as Clarion Ledger Editor in Chief.

There's a booger bear behind every tree not yet leveled on the Parkway. There's creepy crawlies and wooly boogers under every new hotel bed in Ridgeland. There's a cigarette boat idling at the Rez, ready to whisk Gene Magee, Feel Bryant (and two who are secret players) into oblivion as soon as their suitcases are stuff and bulging. They will send for their families later.

Anonymous said...

Gee @2:44 AM, you sound almost exactly like Madison's Don Drane.

Anonymous said...

Whoever it is, 2:44 is not from around here. I'm guessing Tennessee or Arkansas. And the tactics are standard PAID TROLL material.

Anonymous said...

What constitutes a "troll"? Someone other than the 5 of you regulars? Someone who calls out the ridiculousness of this post or your comments believing and supporting it? Those things do not = paid material. You have a right to your opinion as do those who disagree with you. Difference being that the majority of the time, the regulars are here to hate and join a witch hunt.

Anonymous said...

Is that you Don? Vic Cavett is trying to reach you.

Anonymous said...

If you're asking that of 2:04, 'fraid not, dear. Just another conspiracy theory on your part.

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