Friday, October 7, 2016

"I" stands for Incompetence....

The Jackson 1% Sales Tax Commission attempted to meet Wednesday.  The word attempted is use because "project manager" IMS Engineers completely botched the report to the commission. Rarely has JJ witnessed such a display of incompetence at a meeting of any board or commission that didn't involve Kenneth Stokes.

Do you think JJ is being a little too harsh on IMS? Watch the video for yourself.  The city is paying IMS $839,000 for one year to act as manage projects funded by the 1% sales tax.  The Commission meets on the first Wednesday of every month at 2:00 PM.  There was a quorum present at Wednesday's meeting.  The Commission was ready to get down to business. 

However, no agenda was provided to the commission.  Jackson Greater Chamber of Commerce President Duane O'Neil chaired the meeting as Chairman and Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber was absent (He did send two representatives to observe.).  However, Mr. O'Neil adapted and said the powerpoint presentation provided by IMS could serve as the agenda.

There was one small glitch.  IMS always provides printed copies of its presentation to the Commission at each meeting.  The information includes spending spreadsheets, charts, lists of projects, and other important data.  The Commissioners need this info in order to evaluate progress.  The commissioners asked IMS to provide the information prior to the meeting.  IMS did not do so.  IMS told the Commission that the packet of materials was still being printed at Jackson Blue.  The Commission also voted at the September 2 meeting to create a check ledger for the funds spent out of the 1% sales tax account.  No ledger was provided at this meeting (See 25:00 in Part 1 of video).  Commissioners were not too happy with the inability to provide an honest accounting for the funds spent.

The Commissioners attempted to follow along for a few minutes with the powerpoint presentation but gave up after it became clear that the data provided in the information could not be read (Go to 10:15 in first video for a good example.).  However, they got tired of struggling to follow along with a presentation they could not actually read and called it quits after an hour.  They made their displeasure known to the IMS representatives.  The printed copies just happened to arrive after they adjourned the meeting and were walking out of the door.

Kingfish note:  Calhoun needs to quit worrying about high fashion and start doing the job he is being paid nearly a million dollars to do.  Part of that job involves presenting reports to the commission AND the public.  The IMS representatives also collected the email addresses of everyone present at the meeting and promised to email an electronic copy of the report.  IMS has yet to do so.  Shocker. 

JJ would love to post a copy of the presentation but it can't be scanned.  See for yourself:


Anonymous said...

I guess the WJS was for size comparison?

Anonymous said...

Does this surprise anyone? Jackson is lead by incompetence. They hire incompetence. They usually do not even show up for a meeting. The people who show up know nothing about why they are holding the meeting
Sort of a 3 ring circus where only the clowns show up.

Kingfish said...


Anonymous said...

Sounds like IMS needs a project manager! lol

Anonymous said...

I can't bear to watch it, Kingfish, but maybe you can answer my question. How are the contracts being awarded? There was concern that the Project Manager would be able to circumvent the normal procurement process (i.e., competitive bidding) and just award contracts to the mayor's buddies. Is that happening?

Anonymous said...

More proof that we need less government, less government regulations and fewer politicians. Almost every thing the government does on your behalf is done poorly and at a ridiculous price. DMV, Post office, VA Healthcare, IRS, MDA, FEMA. You name it and politicians will find a way to ruin it and get a cut doing so.

Anonymous said...

Jackson is lost.

Anonymous said...

Give them HELL Pete!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Based on the group gathered around the table not one of them has civil engineering experience. Blind leading the blind. Just because Duckworth has developed some land doesn't make him a certified contractor or engineer. It's already been shown on this site that hiring a project engineer was pointless and the city could have done this job for a fraction of the cost. But, since they did, the commission should be made up of other professional engineers and contractors who can actually call BS on their report.

KF, have you checked to see if they have met other goals proposed in plan? The public relations, the website with updates, etc.

Anonymous said...

glad i dont live in jackson

Anonymous said...

They had prayer before the meeting. Wow! Amazing.

Anonymous said...

It looks as though there was confusion on both sides with new staff being involved since the previous meeting. The meeting seemed to be helpful to "clear the air" on process and issues.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, 1:49. Better check your facts. First off, engineering experience is not necessarily what is needed to see that money is spent appropriately. But there is engineering experience in the group - and since you want to specify, it is civil engineering. Come back again when you get your facts straight.

But bring with you a reason why engineering - of any type - is a prerequisite for deciding if the politicians that are spending your tax money are spending it as the law allows.

Anonymous said...

I give you my word. I could mismanage the 1% sales tax projects for a fourth of what these clowns are doing it for. I. am. in. the. wrong. business.

Anonymous said...

"Based on the group gathered around the table not one of them has civil engineering experience. Blind leading the blind" -- Anonymous at 1:49.

Based on your concept of management and oversight, then the Mayor and the City Council should all be civil engineers. What a concept!! Obviously you have no idea what the role of the 'group around the table' is. Let me clue you in - it is not to design or to build any of the infrastructure in the city. It is to deal with the spending of tax dollars that are collected for our streets, water and sewer.

The city has a staff of engineers in the pubic works department. Yarber had them hire this bunch of clowns supposedly to help manage these projects, but it appears that it was to spread the money around among his cronies. Plenty of engineers - why do you think they need more?

Anonymous said...


Everybody talks about what we can't do due to someone else's inability to not do something.

This IMS bunch is a bunch of dumbasses.

Tell them if the meeting presentations are not ready ON TIME, they are fired. Period.

Isn't affirmative action great?

Anonymous said...

This group has been on the mentoring program for years, I guess they didn't pay attention.

Pete Perry said...

2:48 - not so. The previous meeting was two weeks earlier. And another one three weeks before that. There is no 'new staff' - the only thing that has changed in staff is that two staff members have left (Director Powell and an assistant that help coordinate this process) - a new interim director.

IMS has been on board for entire year of 2016. So the confusion is not new staff. Granted there were three new members of the commission - but that is not the cause of the confusion.

Yes - the 'process and issues' were cleared up. AGAIN. All that was done in this meeting was to say another time what the process was to be. Frustrating.

Pete Perry said...

1:09 - don't know if your concerns were actually a concern, but its not happening. All the contracts are being awarded on a competitive bid basis - but understand, the City prepares the request for proposals, evaluates them, and awards the contracts - not this Commission. Can't speak to the various requirements that are being put into the bid requirements as resulting in the awards going to the best and most qualified bidder.

Anonymous said...

X Judge Windgate needs a job!!!

Anonymous said...


Dane Kitto said...

Hilarious, but who cares? It's Jackson. Best thing going right now is Hooters.

Anonymous said...

Jackson doesn't have a prayer. Oh wait, they did pray.

Lot of good it did.

Must learn how to pray effectively.

Anonymous said...

This unelected sales tax commission was designed and ordered by the State Legislature before Jackson could even vote to tax itself an additional 1% on some purchases. I cannot believe the number of valuable city employees who had to sit through this and be paid by the city. The others are giving up their time to serve on this commission. Why does it have to be so dis-organized? Who was supposed to supply the Agenda? Obviously the project manager was supposed to supply some printed data for the meeting. The minutes from the last time were handed out at the meeting rather than given to the members in time to review. This commission was supposed to approve the plan and to decide when the plan was not being followed if changes were in reasonable compliance with the plan. What an absolute waste of time and money this video represents.

Anonymous said...

The city outsources everything to consulting firms. So what do the throngs of city employees do? Does the city perform any tasks itself other than hiring consulting firms?

Anonymous said...

838 - your concerns about the "unelected" commission shows either your (1) support for those members of this administration that don't like having oversight over their spending this additional tax money or (2) your total ignorance of how any government functions or (3) both.

Every part of government has unelected boards or commissions as part of the governance. Commission on wildlife and fisheries, institutions of higher education, commission on environmental quality - many others at the state level whose authority and responsibility are vast. Civil service commission, election commission, airport authority and dozens of others at the city level. What makes an 'unelected' group here stand out except you don't like some people looking over the mayor using this as his personal piggy bank?

Agenda should have been prepared by these high paid consultants, or in the alternative by some of those city employees you bitch about having to sit around twiddling their thumbs. This video shows the same contempt that this administration has shown to everybody - he does the same thing at city council meetings: documents are being prepared and on the way - but never make it; refusal to provide information requested by (this commission) (city council); ignoring the rules and law and askin for forgiveness later.

I for one am glad that these folks are willing to give their time, unpaid I understand, to try to put some saneness in getting some problems fixed with our streets.

Anonymous said...

Who is this know it all SOB that likes to post books about everything? He seems to like to call everyone an idiot. Must be a politician.

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