Wednesday, January 23, 2019

DPS Repaying Feds for Misuse of DUI Grants

The state of Mississippi has repaid $1.3 million of DUI grants to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  NHTSA ordered the Department of Public Safety to repay $7 million in DUI enforcement grants after it determined DPS mismanaged the funds. 

JJ reported on July 26, 2017:


The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration demanded the Mississippi Department of Public Safety repay $7.1 million in DUI enforcement grants.  DPS stalled paying the federal government for several years, but the NHTSA finally said enough is enough and referred the debt to the Treasury Department for collection last November.  NHTSA also said Mississippi continued to have problems in using the grants. DPS refused to provide any records about the demands to this website but JJ was able to obtain them from NHTSA.  ....
However, the NHTSA wasn't finished with chewing out Santa Cruz.  The feds said they first told DPS about the improper payments  in 2009 and classified Mississippi as "high risk" for these grants in 2011.  Mississippi was notified about the $7.1 repayment since February 2013.  NHTSA said it "attempted to work" with the Mississippi Office of Highway Safety to solve the recurring problems. It first demanded repayment of the $7.1 million in 2014 before it sent a formal demand in September, 2015.  The NHTSA extended the deadline twice and only then gave Mississippi a "clear" deadline to settle the dispute.  Mr. Hemmersbaugh (NHTSA General Counsel) told the Commissioner, "Your letter makes several arguments, none of which is relevant to the issue of the misspent funds" and, "Mississippi is engaged in a continuing pattern of significant performance failures."  Ouch.

Commissioner Cruz appealed the decision in October but NHTSA said the decision could not be appealed.  It also informed the Commissioner the $7.1 million was referred to the Department of Treasury for collection.  The Commissioner sent yet another letter begging for reconsideration in November.  However, Mr. Hemmersbaugh told the Commissioner to take the matter up with the Department of the Treasury since it was now collecting the debt.

DPS refused to admit any such demands existed and told JJ that there was no correspondence between NHTSA and DPS regarding the repayment of the DUI enforcement grants.  To put it mildy, the sumbitches at DPS lied while their credibility died.  JJ obtained the records from the NHTSA.  The Ethics Commission later ordered DPS to provide the records as well.  Post about Ethics Commission ruling. The correspondence revealed several exchanges between the NHTSA, DPS, and Governor's office over the repayment of the federal grant, contrary to what DPS told this correspondent.


NHTSA ordered DPS to repay $7 million to the Feds and referred the debt to the Treasury Department for collection.  JJ submitted a public records request to the Department of Finance & Administration for a list of payments to NHTSA or the Treasury for the repayment of the DUI enforcement grants since January 1, 2016.   DFA provided a list of regular payments that have been made since 2016.

The state paid $1.3 million at a schedule of  $50,000 per month to NHTSA since November 2016 although there is one payment for $150,000. 

Kingfish note: Keep in mind that Governor Phil Bryant just happened to request $7 million for a "trooper school."  The requested funding just happens to be equal to the debt owed to the NHTSA.  The debt that DPS has yet to admit exists.

What is troubling is that not a single legislator has bothered to ask DPS Commissioner Marshall Fisher about the repayment of this debt despite the numerous times he has appeared before legislative committees at the capitol.  When will the distinguished Senators and Representatives actually do their jobs?



44 comments:

Anonymous said...

People really need to read the bills being introduced.. DPS wants raises(undeserving), trooper school(pointless) and more power(ill advised)... they’ll most likely get it because they have the legislature snowed

Anonymous said...

i would love to see all federal money flowing into this state completely cut off , thus allowing this place to become what it is in reality, which is a third world backwater run by illiterate thugs. mississippi should have its statehood revoked and be run by a committee appointed by the president.

Anonymous said...

gross incompetence at a minimum and outright theft at a maximum. however you can bet your ole miss season tickets and your yeti cooler that no employee at DPS will be so much as reprimanded for this debacle . government bureaucracy ..... the only place in the county where you can be an absolute bozo and still keep a well paid , full benefits job ,where you are just basically required to show with a pulse rate and a couple of brain waves.

Cynical Sam said...

How was the money misspent/mismanaged? New office furnishings? Luxury cars for the brass? Creative overtime charges? Bonuses?

Thanks for your good work! JJ is the man!

Anonymous said...

OUCH and OUCH. This entire article ought to chap and burn the ass of the Governor and every soul in the legislature. Not because it happened, necessarily, but because they have been exposed as not doing a damned thing about it. Instead, they're all looking around at each other, chirping, "Who ME?"

Missing from the above is whether or not a deal was struck with IRS for monthly payments. I assume it was, which is standard. Or did the state call one of those legal-firms that promise to reduce your federal IRS liens?

Let the legislature bail out DPS while they're bailing out Jackson.

Anonymous said...

i find it very ironic that multiple candy ass republicans spent their entire lives on this site bashing the city of jackson but dont say a word about the three ring circus known as DPS. thats simply because DPS is run by their precious republican party.

Anonymous said...

lets see you or me get 7 million into hock with the feds and we will see if we get about 10 years to pay it back.

Anonymous said...

DPS will never own up to any wrongdoing, the only way to hold them accountable is through the appropriations and hearings processes. BUT, we all know that will never happen because troopers - by virtue of their most trusted high-speed chauffeur status - know too much about our esteemed legislators.

Anonymous said...

This is where we need a good State Attorney General to look into these matters. Oh I'm sorry, the State Attorney General can't even stop spam calls coming to my telephone. Never mind. Let the kickback continue!

Anonymous said...

They should just tell everyone that Mexico is paying for it. That’ll be a good enough explanation for 90% of us Mississippians.

Anonymous said...

This feels like a big story but it also feels like it wont make it on any other news outlet

Anonymous said...

Curious what Bomgar says about this. He's one of the few NEW outsider smartguys that care... and can help rid this old-school crap style of malfeasance.

Anonymous said...

Ten Safest Cities in Mississippi

1. Madison
2. Brandon
3. Byram
4. Ridgeland
5. Oxford
6. Brookhaven
7. Horn Lake
8. West Point
9. Southhaven
10. Ocean Springs

Anonymous said...

9:50 - You must not be from 'round here. How many years have we had Republican governors. Fordice was the first in three quarters of a century. The old guard at this agency has been in place for decades and these ills, although just now seeing exposure, have probably existed forever. You people are quick to jump on your 'republican bashing bullshit' soap box.

If you lived here then, you'll want to remember that your boy Mabus put Louisa Dixon in charge of this agency. We won't get to deep into sexuality; however, she was a woman with zero experience in management, much less law enforcement. But, she met Mabus' 'candidate profile' at the time.

But, back to the current governor: I have a suggestion. Forget all about your list of those potentially up for pardon. Instead, make a list right now of those you can fire before you disappear into a lobbyist position.

Anonymous said...

@ January 23, 2019 at 10:39 AM

This feels like a big story but it also feels like it wont make it on any other news outlet

You are right, it is a big story. But our local television news outlets suck balls. They are complacent with this state's government futility and corruption. Long as they are reporting on the latest Jackson shooting, the troglodytes eat it up and it quenches their thirst for what is real news until they turn to Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity.

Along with Paul Gallo, JT, and Kim Wade - telling boogeyman stories of liberals coming to take away their guns and gay Muslims coming from Mexico coming to take their jobs, this is how this shit continues to happen. It's apathy at its finest.

Boris Badenov said...

10:28 - The 45th President of these here United States Donald J. Trump, living in your head 24/7 RENT FREE!

Kingfish said...

They don't want to hurt their access to law enforcement. Report the wrong story and boom!, no more hot tips, no more off the record tidbits, no ride arounds, you get the picture.

CL started reporting on DPS shenanigans last week and that is because a brand new reporter from out of town didn't know he was supposed to take a dive. Poor sap.

Anonymous said...

So now it is up to "local television news" to carry the banner for the fourth estate?

Good Lord how far we've fallen to even remotely believe that was ever a possibility.

BTW, by all means, let's insult "the troglodytes" for stupidly paying the bills.

I'm guessing that 'Tolerance' is your middle name. Am I right?

Anonymous said...

Wait until they see the bill when the feds finish the audit to present time. This crap continued on for years.

Anonymous said...

Kingfisher @12:15

This is exactly what is happening with my local Laurel newspaper, Laurel Leader Call, and Jones County sheriff, "Hollywood" Hodge. They've been in a pissing contest for quite some time now. Formally there was cooperation and no problem providing access to info was without "hoops to jump through" between the 2. Now the paper has to pay for the highly redacted information service. JCSO has an information director making $37,000 annually but doesn't provide info without "pain".

Anonymous said...

Wasn't one Penny Corn, relieved of her duties because she reported the misuse of these dollars to the feds? This is not going away.

Anonymous said...

Yes!!!have there not been many headlines concerning DPS this week already! You can connect the dots back to the puppet Chris Randy and Marshall. And draw a straight line to those three puppets. How many more headlines concerning DPS does it take to show the people and our elected officials in Jackson that these people in charge are first class morons. They feel they are so above the law they don’t obey Their own policy. Now they feel that they can cheat and steal from the federal government. But the ones with oversight at public safety planning better not bring it to anyone’s attention. They will quickly find themselves unemployed, because why! Marshal Will terminate you, use in-house attorneys at the expense of taxpayer dollars, and appeal the verdict of not guilty by SPB and tie it up in court. Again what is it gonna take to remove Marshall

Anonymous said...

The ocean of federal money is what gets the hogs a runnin' in Mississippi. Why do you think the buffoons ran through the Broadband Bill so hurriedly? Federal grant dollars, that's why....but their time is coming - and those hogs will get slaughtered. Because many billions are at stake....the stupid/useless Attorney General and the new State Auditor ain't going to get it done because they're "friends" with all the insiders from the Oxford plantation. A U.S. Inspector General, FBI, IRS, DOJ will need to dig into every agency to see the fraudulent data being submitted for over a decade....and they will. Mississippi could easily meet RICO requirements....as well as Hatch Act violations for the bullying of people to keep their mouths shut....or else lose their job (i.e. economic assassination).

Anonymous said...

@3:48 "use in-house attorneys", that's rich! It must be nice to be a leftover from Hall now at DPS in a created position. Again it's not what you know, it's who you know boys.

Anonymous said...

What was behind John (Trae) Sims departure as general counsel of DPS last year?

Anonymous said...

CL needs to print all MHP, DOC, DPS that has been discussed here all week. They need it and then all other media outlets.

Anonymous said...

DPS LEAD BY A BUNCH OF SCHMUCKS

Anonymous said...

This has been going on for years DPS is in the office of the Governor and are protected by what they know. A trooper is assigned to the Governor, Lt Governor and speaker. The know all their personal and political secrets which could be used against them. Also they help out legislators and donors which gives them even more protection. Most incompetent and corrupt agency in the state. No one has the guts to take it one. I do know someone who tried and his daughter got stopped and tickets every time. He came home. They made their point.

Anonymous said...

4:39 - Your knowledge of The Hatch Act seems to be lacking.

Anonymous said...

"i would love to see all federal money flowing into this state completely cut off , thus allowing this place to become what it is in reality, which is a third world backwater run by illiterate thugs."

9:38; What line of work are you in that you could afford for that to happen? Or are you independently wealthy and retired sitting on your ass in a recliner? Oh, wait! You're an intern at UMMC just counting the days before you can complete the program and catch a bus out of this state.

Anonymous said...

Grants = bribing the sheeple with their own money, even though a terrible ROI.

Anonymous said...

Correction: Hatch Act violations ARE happening....but meant Hobbs Act.

Anonymous said...

Do all these posters calling for Governor to do something really think he will cross the agency that provides his security detail???

Anonymous said...

9:38 is exactly right. Do your research on MS my fellow blogger. Report back with the facts of your findings and allow us all to learn what it is you know. Can you possibly show one fact that will discredit 9:38 blog

Anonymous said...

@ Kingfish

You said - They don't want to hurt their access to law enforcement. Report the wrong story and boom!, no more hot tips, no more off the record tidbits, no ride arounds, you get the picture.

CL started reporting on DPS shenanigans last week and that is because a brand new reporter from out of town didn't know he was supposed to take a dive. Poor sap.


The tone of your statement sounds as if you are o.k. with the status quo then? How we supposed to start holding these entities accountable if our local news outlets are not willing to use true journalistic skills, instead of depending on hand fed information!? What is the solution instead of calling someone a sucker for trying to call out some bullsh*t from one of the government agencies?

Anonymous said...

"Local news outlets" can no longer afford "to use true journalistic skills". They are near broke.

Anonymous said...

to 12:01... yes im from around here. mississippi has been a one party state since reagan carried it back in 1980. put that one in your pipe smoke it.

Anonymous said...

@ January 24, 2019 at 9:59 AM

I'll take it a step further and say Mississippi has been a "conservative" led state since its inception. It just switched party labels over all these years from Democrats to Republicans.

Who can say Mississippi has ever done anything truly "progressive" or "innovative" that other states copied and thought was a good idea?

It's funny how we have some of the most talented people in the country in regards to sports entertainment, literature, and even a few inventions, come from within the borders of this state. But how we function as a state, we are considered the laughing stock of America.

Good ol' "conservative" values! SMH

Anonymous said...

In reply to "to 12:01... yes im from around here. mississippi has been a one party state since reagan carried it back in 1980. put that one in your pipe smoke it." January 24, 2019 at 9:59 AM

You dumb-dick. Count the republican governors since 1980, republican Lt Governors, Republican speakers of the House since 1980 and get back to us.

Anonymous said...

Enough hot air @10:35 to float at least two dirigibles.

Anonymous said...

to 4:39pm........oh so you wanna do a lil counting? republicans hold every statewide elected office except the AG. count that up, or can you not count that high?

Anonymous said...

I’ve heard DPS used over 300K in federal grant money to help pay for the Trooper school going through right now. Income taken from federal grants has to go back into the grant and used for its intended purpose. They haven’t learned from 2012

Anonymous said...

@ January 24, 2019 at 4:49 PM

Enough hot air @10:35 to float at least two dirigibles.

I bet yo' mammy could provide enough for 20. Play with it!

Anonymous said...

to jan 23 @10:56 .....no im not wealthy nor am i an UMMC intern. but i know how to catch , kill , and grow my own food and i own alot of guns and a little gold. ill get by just fine. its candy -asses like you that will starve.

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