Wednesday, January 2, 2013

And another good ole boy steps up to the DMR plate

No sooner had the Board of Directors for the Department of Marine Resources suspended Executive Director Bill Walker without pay, than Deputy Director and former Representative Danny Guice said he wanted the job. The Sun-Herald reported this weekend:

"Though the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources is the focus of ongoing state and federal probes, its recently suspended chief appointed a former state lawmaker as a deputy director in November and the new employee hopes he'll be permanently appointed to replace his boss.

The Commission on Marie Resources suspended DMR Executive Director Bill Walker indefinitely without pay Friday while the investigation continues. Walker, who hired Danny Guice as deputy director, plans to retire between now and June, and Guice is in charge during Walker's suspension.

Guice, a former state lawmaker who represented Ocean Springs, is interested in a permanent promotion.

"I am (interested in the job)," Guice said. "If I were not, I don't believe I would have come in. Since I've been here, it's pretty apparent I'm here for a reason.

"And that's a good thing."

Guice said he'll make only a few tweaks to the DMR if he's chosen to lead it. He also believes the agency could be out from under the cloud of a federal audit as early as February....

Guice doesn't see a need for wholesale changes at DMR, though.

"Being here this past couple of months has helped me realize some of the things I would tweak, some I wouldn't," he said. "If it's working right, why fix it? No need to reinvent the wheel.

"Most of what goes on down here is good stuff. Contrary to the articles that have appeared in the paper, most of these people are dedicated, highly trained folks and it's been hurtful to them to read some of this stuff. It's a good agency, it does good work and it's my goal to see that it continues to do that."

The preliminary audit report, in fact, focuses on the actions of just a few people at DMR, primarily Walker and Tina Shumate, the director of DMR's Coast Management and Planning Office. Guice said DMR just made its latest response to the audit by the Interior Department's Office of Inspector General.
" Article

A good thing for who? If there is one problem that has plagued DMR, it is incest. All the good ole boys from the Coast, where everyone knows everyone, making deals, stealing our money, slapping each other on the back, you get the idea. Now here comes another from the Coast who thinks he is entitled to the job. If there is anything the state should do, it is appoint an executive director who is not from the coast. But then again, this is Mississippi, most corrupt state in the union and last place in most categories.

"Only a few tweaks to the DMR"? That quote says it all right there.


Shadowfax said...

Look for Oliver Diaz' hat to wind up in this ring. Remember the Simpson County Judge ordering the hiring of Diaz two years ago? Seems Diaz only needed a little more time in the PERS system to 'earn' full retirement. Of course that move ran afoul of sunshine.

This will be a perfect fit for Diaz who lives in the area, is fond of saltwater boating, knows how to host a party on the water and can surely shuffle three shells in a little slight of hand.

He may even hang on for 'four high years' in the system.

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the good ole boys downtown doing everything they can to drain Jackson's treasury.

Maybe Jackson's redevelopment efforts should be led by someone(s) with no connections to downtown business and property ownership interests.

Anonymous said...

You know what would be nice, seriously, is some leadership from Governor Bryant, Lt. Governor Reeves, Speaker Gunn, Secretary of State Hoseman (he controls tidelands lease money that goes to DMR), on this whole DMR issue. They are the top elected leaders in this state that have control over DMR's budget, their purse-strings, appointing their Commission Board, etc. Why nothing but silence from these top elected state officials about this important and costly state agency? Why?

Shadowfax said...

Don't be surprised if you see Oliver Diaz' hat in this ring as well. Several years ago the Dishonorable Judge Buggington, south of Jackson, ordered a state agency to place Diaz on the payroll because he only needed a little more time in order to get bellied up to the PERS retirement trough.

Don't think Diaz isn't having visions of cruise junkets for friends and parties at the expense of the state in a position like this one.

Anonymous said...

Because 9:11 if someone steps up and behaves like an adult, there won't be any more free deep sea fishing trips for legislators and their grandsons.

Anonymous said...

Diaz spends more time at the Beagle Bagel in Madison than he does on the coast these days.

Shadowfax said...

Not to worry. He'll surely trade a bag of bagels for three high years and a full state retirement. If you think you've seen Diaz grin before...........wait for this.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Need to read the above referenced story about Barber and Mann in the Livingston Dailey Times

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