Friday, January 22, 2016

Setback for Lord Snow at the River of Pearl

The Pearl River County Board of Supervisors decided that Butler Snow had lived pretty well at the county trough and terminated a $450,000 "consulting" contract at its regular board meeting this week.  The Picayune Item reported yesterday:

Wednesday, the Pearl River County Board of Supervisors decided not to renew a contract with Butler Snow after hearing concerns from citizens about its failure to bring economic development to the county.

Pearl River County resident Tavish Kelly represented a group of concerned citizens expressing concern over the proposed contract renewal with VisionFirst Advisors, an economic development firm of Butler Snow.

The board entered into a contract with the law firm in 2012 to manage the county’s economic development efforts to attract businesses and boost employment, which Kelly said is a waste of the county’s time. “One of our concerns is the idea of hiring an outside firm and charging them with economic development to begin with,” Kelly said.

The previous contract required the county to pay the firm $450,000 within a three-year period to assist with economic development, according to previous Item coverage.

“The expectation was that Butler Snow would deliver new business to the county in order for our citizens to prosper and earn more money and for the general value of this community to increase. And that did not manifest,” Kelly said. “We want to see our county richer, wealthier and better employed. We need to keep our tax dollars within the county.”

He recommended the board make the contract public and hold a hearing to get public feedback, however, the board immediately agreed that it was time to cut ties with the contract in order to move the county forward. Rest of article
The contract is not a public record? Oh really. 


Anonymous said...

One does not simply "terminate" a contract with Lord Snow.

Anonymous said...

Wow, talk about a thief in the night.....Geez, come on people, DO FOR YOURSELVES!!!! HMMMM, let's see, I want to boost economic development,****LIGHT BULBBBBB**** let's go hire a law firm for that and pay them a huge fee.....Genius idea right there!!!......and shame on Butler Snow for being such whores!!!

Anonymous said...

good luck getting state money to pave the roads...

Very Very Important Interns said...

Don't think Boss Hogg Barbour will be very happy about this turn of events.

Proper Grooming said...

As an USM economic development graduate student intern, she works out of the Trent Lott National Center for Excellence in Economic Development and Entrepreneurship on the Hattiesburg campus. The Center allows Glover access to multiple data resources and experienced economic development professionals overseeing the work on behalf of VisionFirst Advisors.

I believe that. I really, really believe that. "Access" is extremely important. "Access" to "professionals" and "data resources" even more so.

Anonymous said...

Pay these grifters, or else no one will keep buying Mercedes' and eating out at nice restaurants and other such suburban horrors. Mississippi economic development....

Anonymous said...

fyi ya'lls' hero haley barbour is the partner from butler snow that is a a partner in vision first. i bet phil's old (young) economic advisor hairston is involved as well. pay better attention and you'll notice that a great many of your problems come from those you worship.

Anonymous said...

Butler Snow bilking a governmental entity????? SHOCKING

Oh wait...

Killed Contract To Keep It Secret said...

District III Supervisor Hudson Holliday said the county should work with Butler Snow to a certain degree.

There is a place for Butler Snow, but when you start dealing with Washington that kind of stuff worries me. I want our own folks working here,” Holliday said. “We may hire Butler Snow at some point in time as a consultant. But economic development needs to be paid for by the county, the city of Picayune and Poplarville, we need to all be in the game.”

Secretary to EcoDevo Guru said...

When you've got what it takes you ascend the ladder very rapidly.

Anonymous said...

The circle become more curious:

Shelby Glover is the first intern for VisionFirst. She is a graduate student at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM), anticipating earning a Master’s of Science in Economic Development in August 2016. Glover currently supports the work in Pearl River County, MS and other clients.

Anonymous said...

The taxpayers should demand an accounting from Butler Snow - this is criminal - and its criminally stupid to hire them in the first place. They had an INTERN doing this? Clearly in MS it is who you know. Kingfish, can you request records that show what Butler Snow did to fulfill the contract? I'm kind of sick of watching this crap.

Anonymous said...

Who wants to bet that there are Haley deals like the one in Pearl River County scattered all over Mississippi? Any takers?

The grand total sum of all the Haley Barbour boondoggles burning through taxpayer dollars in Mississippi has to be pushing $150 million dollars at this point.

Anonymous said...

“With its decision to locate production facilities in Mississippi, KiOR is providing high-quality job opportunities for workers in rural areas of the state while, at the same time, benefitting the Mississippi forestry industry and farmers through its commitment to using feedstock from renewable resources grown in the state”.

Gray Swoope
-- Executive Director of the Mississippi Development Authority
-- August 26, 2010

Anonymous said...

Simple, Pearl River County was purchasing influence.

Anonymous said...

One does not have to go to PR County to see how BS screws local governments.

Anonymous said...

No doubt about it Kingfish, they killed the contract renewal to avoid disclosure.

Picayune Item, May 1, 2015
Is the county getting their worth from Butler Snow?

Because of this possibility, it’s especially important that the total cost and expenses of the contract, including the cost of hiring an interim and long-term executive director, the costs associated with long-term financing of the new county wide economic development association and the total expense associated with the site readiness property must be made public before any renewal action is taken.
Voters should oppose renewing the Butler Snow contract, the creation of an appointed county economic development authority that is unaccountable to the voters and a refusal to publish expenditures. We need less Butler Snow intrusion into county affairs, not more.

Anonymous said...

Not only does BS intentionally bilk taxpayers and governments, it uses incompetent young sprats to do the "real work," and that screws everything up for everybody all over again. Prime example: Young incompetent BS attorney failed to follow the clear law in establishing the Lost Rabbit PID, and that mistake which they never owned up to ended up costing REAL people a LOT. I hate that firm.

Anonymous said...

Please tell me no GoZone dollars were used to build the current Butler Snow office. I can't fathom the thought that my taxes went to pay for Haleys plush office that he doesn't even go to.

Anonymous said...

So Haley has corporate America paying him to secure my tax dollars for crony projects and then he had counties paying him bribes to locate these crony projects in their county? He then uses his law firm to do the legal work? Pay your taxes, put a Thad sign in yard every know and then and shut the hell up!!

Anonymous said...

Someone, anyone, please compile a summary of how much milk Butler Snow pulls from the government tit each year. I bet if you add up all of the local governments and state agencies it is in the millions.

It is no coincidence that so many people with ties to government work there:
- Former MDEQ director Trudy Fisher
- Former MDA director Gray Swoope
- Former guvnah Barbour
- Phil's daughter

Trudy Fisher leaving MDEQ to go to Butler Snow, only to be replaced by a Butler Snow lawyer was a particularly obvious farce.

Looks like maybe Ronnie's letter wasn't so crazy after all.

Anonymous said...

Love the Butler Snow haters here. Nothing different - check the history books. Always have one or two law firms that get lots of the business, hire all the 'former' employees, etc. Baker Donaldson has its share today, mostly though on the Insurance side. Others have them from the education industry. BB has theirs as well.

And having low level new entries do lots of the grunt work isn't limited to the BS offices - that happens in all the large firms as well. Moving out of practicing law and getting into the business development and the lobbying operations is doing nothing but expanding the process.

If I am the managing partner of a firm looking to get into these governmental areas, I am recruiting the former agency directors as well. Why the hell wouldn't you - particularly when these folks practiced law at a big firm before they ran the agency?? Someone who has run the DEQ is a prime catch for an environmental division for example. You want to open a business development operation why wouldn't you recruit and try to get someone who has been in that business for decades?

Maybe you haters think that we only ought to have lifetime bureaucrats running government agencies, and they should stay there until they retire. That way no firm would be accused of doing a good job recruiting employees for their firm.

Wonder why it is ok for Ronnie to go to a law firm and spend most of his efforts getting clients to sue the state but you want to hate on BS because Haley went there when he left the mansion. Will you condemn Phil when he goes back to a sheriff's office to take back his arson-deputy badge because that sheriff will get first dibs on the firebugs?

Anonymous said...

Setback? Hell!! A $150k/year contract that required at least a modicum of work isn't a setback for ButlerSnow. Its a change of administration year and folks/firms that have these kind of contracts expect this - partly why they are set to expire during this time period. Losing Pearl River County will be offset by gaining elsewhere - just like Mike Espy losing his gig in Madison will surely be offset shortly. Not a big loss for the kingdom of west ridgeland.

Wonder, though, who everybody here that has such good feelings for ButlerSnow think should pick up this 'plum'. $150,000 a year to run an economic development department for a county isn't really a great deal - figure the costs involved and its really just one employee on staff with expenses.

Anonymous said...

4.02....Digital Strategy Director at Butler Snow??

Anonymous said...

5:19 - Nope. No connection. Don't even particularly care for the firm. But recognize reality, and the political history of law firms in MS over last several decades. Sorry

Anonymous said...

Hater? What an overused trope.

Anonymous said...

do people on here not realize that Haley Barbour has a very limited role at Butler Snow. He spends most of his time in Washington at his firm there not Butler Snow. Same as Trent Lott. Those guys are paid a fee to do a few meetings a year, but to think that they are behind deals like this is pretty funny.

Anonymous said...

"The grand total sum of all the Haley Barbour boondoggles burning through taxpayer dollars in Mississippi has to be pushing $150 million dollars at this Point."

A measly $150 Mil? What about the $6.5 Billion Haley Barbour/Mississippi Power coal gasification plant in Kemper County? Those are the real wasted bucks.

Anonymous said...

Kemper plant is not state dollars. Get over it. Hate HB as much as you want - hate BS. But continuing to say that Kemper was Haley's project - or that it has billions of state money in it is nothing but a lie. And the Bigger Pie folks that want to keep on pushing it should look at where their original money came from. Pot / kettle?

Anonymous said...

For those that don't know, your federal and state dollars, millions of them, leftover from ITD, is now being used to fund the agenda of Bigger Pie Forum.

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