Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Airport legal fees fall

Lawyers representing the Jackson Municipal Airport Authority submitted invoices in September and October that were lower than they have been since they were retained. However, the combined billings for both months were $87,749 (an average of $43,874).   The Walker Group and the May Firm current represent JMAA.

The JMAA Board of Commissioners approved these invoices that appeared on the September and October claims dockets. 

September 2015
May Firm: $5,490
Walker Group: $35,333
Total: $40,823

October 2015
May Firm: $6,100
Walker Group: $40,526
Total: $46,626

The billings average $43,874 per month.  They averaged $71,955 per month prior to September and  $81,217 per month in 2014.  JJ reported on October 8:

Attorneys have billed over $3.4 million to the Jackson Municipal Airport Authority since 2012.  JJ obtained the monthly billings through public records requests and reviewing claims dockets.  The years have been good to law firms that represented JMAA.  The overall budget for JMAA in 2014 was only $17.8 million.  The billings are:

2015 (8 months) billings: $503,687
2015 (8 months) monthly average: $71,955

2014 billings: $980,747
2014 monthly average: $81,728

2013 billings: $684,754
2013 monthly average: $57,062

2012 billings: $1,293,633
2012 monthly average: $107,802

Total: $3,462,821
 Three different law firms represent the Jackson Municipal Aiport: The Walker Group, The May Firm, and Baker Donelson. Baker Donelson was the long-time counsel for the airport. However, the Board of Commissioners voted in December 2013 to replace Baker Donelson immediately with The Walker Group. John Walker is the managing partner at The Walker Group. He is known to be the close friend of Congressman Bennie Thompson as well as his attorney. The board took the action at the first meeting after Mayor Chokwe Lumumba appointed James Henley, Reverend Jeffrey Stallworth, and retired bureaucrat Vernon Hartley in November 2013. The vote was 3-1 in favor of the action as the Lumumba appointments voted in en bloc.

The board then voted unanimously to hire the May Firm as additional counsel in Feburary 2014. Regina Quinn and her husband John May comprise the May Firm.

The rest of the billings and invoices can be found at this earlier post. 


Anonymous said...

Maybe if the City had more economic activity, it would require more legal advice and thus, fees. As of now, the crackerjack commissioner and his board members are presiding over the most stagnant airport in the region. Look how much wasted effort has been displayed over Uber thus far! Jeez. The State needs to take over the airport. The city has no business using the airport as its own personal piggy bank.

Anonymous said...

There is no reason whatsoever for the City of Jackson to stranglehold one of the most important economic development tools available to the State. Somebody with testis needs to step up and take the airport away from jackhole.

Kingfish said...

Chokwe appointed all but one of these commissioners. Blame Harvey for that happening. Current Mayor has little, if any, input, on the airport. It is all Bennie right now.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the worst part is that Walker is a Plaintiff's attorney by trade. His only qualification is being buddies with Benny.

Bored at the Land Record Room said...

Regardless of what mayor did what and appointed whom in the's a few things the current Mayor of Jackson needs to be doing:

1) Expedite UBER, the taxi mafia needs to feel the competition. They are daft, creepy, and expensive. I have been ripped off for the last time by them. They thought I was rich, they thought wrong. The driver was an LSU fan and had strong BO.

2) Shift money from useless Parks and Rec projects, we don't need rinky dink museums and parks under our belt. We need an airport worth showcasing to the metro area. Josh Groban traveled through these parts and did a snarky twitter post about our catfish display. We should have one at least neutral for Josh Groban's standards, regardless of the fact his music is all the same.

3) Yarber needs to promote the extension of High St. to the airport. This would open up downtown as accessible to the entire metro area. People would curiously venture down. It would work with the One Lake Project even. The meetings with the other Mayors have fallen by the wayside.

4) Give the State of MS more skin in the game with the airport, if not full control to the State. The airport actually represents the State as a whole, not just Jackson. We don't need random people on the commission whose only qualification is that they are good at shouting "Ze Plane, Ze Plane!"

Kingfish said...

Ashby tried to get the council to look at getting rid of golf courses during the budget process. Forget it. They didn't want to do it. I've brought it up in private to a couple of members. I even mentioned museums. Forget it. There is no interest among a majority in getting those things off the books.

Anonymous said...

Well, then we need to make Ashby mayor.

Anonymous said...

Downtown Jackustan is already "accessible to the entire metro area". Mayor Phony Yarber has enough on his plate that he already can't handle. Having him dredge up the Airport Parkway that Rankin County municipalities don't want is a major waste of time and cycles.

Anonymous said...

Mayor Rhodes, tear down this wall!

Anonymous said...

WWDD? What Would Dorsey Do?

Anonymous said...

Please keep reporting on this outrageous expense. Between Airport and Jim Hood, and probably many school boards, some attorneys have truly feathered their nests at public expense. Doubt seriously they are worth the "feathers"; probably should be called fleece.

Anonymous said...

@8:06 You need to add bond lawyers to that group of lawyers to look at. Of course, you might be stepping on some toes there since those guys seem to know how to make the right kinds of political contributions to the right politicians.

And, while you're at it, you should take an historical look at the Baker Donaldson billings to the airport authority over the last decade or so. I'll be they were not far off the mark of what's being charged now.

Anonymous said...

Lawyer bashing by folks who know not a thing about what it is these lawyers do.

Yall ready to start complaining about surgeries too?

Good Lord you are some evil stupid people.

Anonymous said...


If you are going to try to compare attorneys with surgeons, you might need to suggest that surgeons go around shooting, infecting, or otherwise injuring people to justify their existence.

Then you would have a proper comparison.

Kingfish said...


You apparently haven't read a damn thing I've written about this. Why don't you try reading both posts before shooting off your mouth and looking like an idiot.

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Note: Security provided by INS.

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