Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Clarion-Ledger & MCEC Are Going to Court

The Clarion-Ledger and Mississippi Community Education Center are going to war in Hinds County Chancery Court.  MCEC is fighting to block a Clarion-Ledger public records request submitted the DHS. Clarion-Ledger reporter Giacomo Bologna asked DHS to provide several records  in March:

* All emails between Anne McGrew and DHS.  McGrew was the accountant for MCEC.  She was indicted for conspiracy and making fraudulent statements.  She is no longer employed at MCEC.

* Any RFP applications submitted by MCEC Executive Director Nancy New between July and January.   MCEC submitted three proposals to DHS.

DHS notified MCEC of the public records request as required by law.  MCEC petitioned the Court on April 22 to seal the records.  It said the proposals contained proprietary information that would help its competitors. The petition states:

8. The Proposals contain information that constitute confidential commercial and financial information of a proprietary nature and trade secret information. Petitioner would show that public disclosure of the entire contents of the Proposals would expose Petitioner's closely held business decisions and confidential commercial and financial information to present or future competitors in the field and compromise MCEC's ability to compete fairly in this highly specialized, competitive business.
Attorneys Parker Berry and Tommie Cardin of Lord Snow represent MCEC.



The Clarion-Ledger decided to show up for the fight and filed a motion to intervene yesterday.  It argued the petition was vague and didn't specify what should be protected:

9. Notably, the Petition does not disclose the number of pages of emails it seeks to shield from public scrutiny, nor does it identify any specific email by sender, recipient, date, time or subject matter, and it advances no argument as to why any of these public records should be exempted from production under the Mississippi Public Records Act. Rather, MCEC seeks to block responsive emails and their attachments on the speculative grounds that, “the contents … may also include portions of the Proposals that include trade secrets and/or confidential commercial and financial information of a proprietary nature …”

Attorneys John Sneed and Charles Cowan of Wise Carter represent the newspaper.






20 comments:

Anonymous said...

Remember this when you are emailing a funny to a government employee. If you don't want your mama to read it, don't send it in an email, but especially don't email it to a government email address.

Anonymous said...

Anne McGrew is wearing an ankle bracelet and singing like a bird in order to save her own skin.

Anonymous said...

Good to see someone other than Kingfish actually going to the mat.

Anonymous said...

what a pissing contest-

Anonymous said...

8:05, how about “in addition to” rather than “other than?” Agree with your sentiment that we need more folks willing to go the mat, especially with regards to holding government accountable. We the People deserve better.

Anonymous said...

Mississippi's government is less open than it has ever been.
Before Gannett bought the Clarion Ledger, a reporter was sent to even rather small government meetings. And, that reporter was well versed in the subject upon which he was assigned to cover.
Now reporters write from the government entities press release far more often than not. And, fewer and fewer reporters have any knowledge whatsoever about city government or environmental issues or government contracts or civics , for that matter. Nor do they have an editor above them who is experienced and knowledgeable in the subject they are covering.

Anonymous said...

I’m sure a lot of the information is “sensitive “ , trade secrets, etc, not so much. Based on Nancy’s history when she was in Rankin County could also be embarrassing. I hope she’s not using money she scammed to pay the attorneys.

Anonymous said...

I’m sure a lot of the information is “sensitive “ , trade secrets, etc, not so much. Based on Nancy’s history when she was in Rankin County could also be embarrassing. I hope she’s not using money she scammed to pay the attorneys.

Anonymous said...

MCEC is a non-profit and the information requested concerned it's acquisition and use of TANF funds. I wish some lawyer could explain to me how they are involved in a "highly competitive" field and need their "commercial interests" protected. Is it Legal jackassery?

Anonymous said...

I’m pretty sure MCEC is about to find out their “trade secrets” are a moot point going forward.

Anonymous said...

Right. Meant 'in addition to'. LeMaster can be dogged in the pursuit also. The rest only talk.

Anonymous said...

Not quite sure how a nonprofit can argue "proprietary" information??? Particularly a nonprofit that allegedly produced virtually no products or services. Who are the "competitors"?

Anonymous said...

It looks like everyone else is as suspicious as I am about their claims of "proprietary" information for a non-profit.

Green Acres said...

Smells like a junior associate defense attorney's desperate attempt to block production of documents. The Court will deal with it.

Anonymous said...

The lawyer who brought up this proprietary bull shit was simply doing his job. What we've come to know about judges in the Metro, it's real safe to assume one of them would jumped and run with that bogus claim. And still might.

Anonymous said...

Where's Deppity Pheel on this?

Anonymous said...

The reporter's last name is Bologna. Am I the only one who thinks that's a hilarious name for a news reporter? (this is coming from a former journalist, so no disrespect to Mr. Bologna)

Anonymous said...

5:35 good question. All this happened right under his nose. His Administration was full of scandal.

Anonymous said...

When are we going to get the names of the nursing homes with the virus. Almost every state in the U.S. has divulges the names, except for Mississippi.

Anonymous said...

So not only did the News steal from the state and the poor, the state has to pay back that money with Medicaid funds. The News doubly screwed the poor

https://mississippitoday.org/2020/05/14/feds-mississippi-must-replace-all-misspent-or-stolen-welfare-money-with-state-funds/

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Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).


Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.


In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.


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Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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