Saturday, April 17, 2021

Frank Flashback

 Throwing stimulus money around as if it's going out of style seems to be all the rage these days.  A shame good ole Frank isn't Mayor today (not).  Check out this December 13, 2008 post: 


Given the typical nature of politicians, it shouldn't be too surprising that when Obama announced he was going to create a huge public-works spending program in an attempt to boost the economy, Frank Melton was right there with his list of projects to submit to the federal government, all 170 ($560 million) of them. If you don't have any idea what these projects are, don't feel too bad, as the Jackson media did a pitiful job reporting on Melton's outrageous grab for some government pork (although Gannett's Washington D.C. reporter did write a short list of highlights for the Clarion-Ledger. No link to a complete list was provided.).

Complete List of Projects

Reading through the list of projects reveals more than a few items of pork and questionable value. Here is a partial list of some of them:

$750,000 for Legion Field Softball Complex (4-plex)
$2.5 million for improving Meadowbrook from State St. to I-55
$1 million for renovation of Viola Lake Community Center
$800,000 for design and construction of Historic Garden in the Farish Street
Historical District.
$3.5 million for Splash Parks
$5 million for Buddy Butts Park Improvements
$3.4 million for design and construction of 30 condo units in Farish Street Historical
District (FSHD) (I wonder who thought of THAT one)
$1 million for Josh Halbert Gardens improvements
$1 million for 509 Pearl Street Building Improvements
$1 million for city baseball fields lighting improvements
$115,000 for UMC Medical Mall Signal Synchronization Plan
$2 million for VA Park Lighting Improvements
$5.5 million for Jatran administrative building (to make LEEDS compliant)
$2.7 million for Playground safety enhancements
$4 million for the impound lot facility
$1 million for solar panels for all community centers operated by city
$1.5 million for Mynelle Gardens
$1.5 million for Battlefield Park
$1.875 million to build 15 units of affordable housing in Royal Manor
$2.5 million to build 20 units of affordable housing in Loginlp Subdivision
$4 million to build 40 units of affordable housing units in Bon Air
$12 million to resurface McDowell Road from I-55 to Hwy 18
$6 million for 18 Jatran buses
$2 million for AVL bus tracking system
$1.5 million for signal improvements at Ridgewood and Old Canton (HUH? It was just done
in the last few years and is working fine.)

Then there are the airports:
$30 million to extend runways at JEIA
$6.2 million for pavement rehabilitation at JEIA
$5 million for installation of perimeter road at JEIA
$15 million to expand International Drive to four lanes at JEIA
$15 million to relocate the air traffic control tower at JEIA
$2,672,303 for passenger boarding bridges at JEIA

Why not just tear down the airport and build a new one. Wait, that IS what they are doing. Had enough? Lets go to Hawkins Field:

$3 million for "access control"
$15 million for runway extension

Olympic Sized pools? Practically building TWO new airports? Gardens? Private housing? What the hell are we doing asking the government to pay for these things, as they are a complete waste of money. Developers are having a tough enough time without competing against the government building private condos in the soon-to-be-developed Farish Street District. We've spent millions renovating the airport over the last few years, yet Jackson wants to tear it all down and start over again?

The Clarion-Ledger reported: "They are things the city desperately needs, but we don't have the money for them," said Robert Walker, Jackson's chief administrative officer." The city DESPERATELY needs FOUR Olympic-sized natatoriums? The city DESPERATELY needs to pay for 30 condos so rich folks can enjoy living by some nightlife? Mr. Walker is honest in saying the city doesn't have the money for these projects and if there is any shred of responsibility among the citizens of Jackson, it will NEVER have the money for some of these projects.

The editorial page at the newspaper abdicated its duty to inform its readers and hold leaders accountable, as it referred to building private condos for Farish Street as "Farish Street Entertainment District needs" and said "They could create thousands of jobs." No wonder they are losing money and laying off employees if this is their idea of sound fiscal management. But I digress.

Apparently Melton (surprise) learned nothing from Katrina, as Governor Blanco of Louisiana tried to pull the same stunt with her request for recovery funds. The amount she requested was so high, as she tried to include many creative inventions of government pork, even the Democrats in Congress refused to help Louisiana after Katrina. While there are projects definitely needed on this list, there is simply too much garbage in this request for Jackson to escape any scrutiny.

Think the criticism of Jackson is too harsh? Look at what other cities asked for in their requests: Little Rock: less than 80 projects. Baton Rouge: 40 projects. New Orleans: 38 projects. You read right: 38. Not even RAY NAGIN was as bad as Frank Melton and that is WITH Katrina damage. Birmingham: 28 projects. Cincinnati: 30 projects. Mobile: 12 projects. Jackson requested funding for 170 projects, the longest list out of all the requests.

No criticism needs to be made, as these project requests and Mr. Walker's statements speak for themselves. Nice to know that once again, Melton and his knucklehead have made Jackson the laughingstock of the nation.



Anonymous said...

and so, what became of the requests - did any of it get done?

Anonymous said...

How did Frank intend to maintain all of that if he got it? They can’t even maintain what they’ve got, it’s all falling apart.

Anonymous said...

Can someone tell me who they think was the last good mayor of Jackson? Not trying to be snarky. Just curious when things started going downhill.

Anonymous said...

Buddy Butts park improvements would have been nice. County gave the city money for it last term, not one rock has been turned over yet.

Anonymous said...

The Obama administration should have known, "Ask a stupid question....

Anonymous said...

Imagine if CoJ could’ve pulled it off. And imagine if a few Joel Bomgars had stayed in the metro and pulled off a tech renaissance in Jackson during the boom years following Obama’s re-election. Now imagine still that students graduating from JPS could actually dream of working at a local big tech company disrupting numerous boomer zombie companies that shouldn’t have received stimulus in 2008.
Nope. Unfortunately, Obama bailed out the boomer zombies companies because the original “me” generation knows no limits to their selfishness. Had to save the boomer pensions and 401K’s

Anonymous said...

And Haley B. threw away over $200 milion of State of MS money on his pet energy boondoggles- Kior, Twin Creeks, Stion, etc. And what happened to the $600 million of Katrina money shifted from housing to the Super Port in Gulfport. Melton just asked for this stuff. Follow the real money...

Anonymous said...

Money is being printed out of thin air anyway, so might as well print $600 million more dollars to send to Jackson along with a note saying keep the change.

Anonymous said...

@9:42 - you sound like a millenial - if it wasn't for boomers, you wouldn't be here. Go cry in your pillow in your mama's basement.

Anonymous said...

These requests are more than 12 years old and were made by an administration headed by a guy who is now dead. I fail to how this is news.

We can talk about how Renaissance was funded with federal disaster relief money if we want to talk about “unnecessary projects” being funded with federal funds. And just in case Rankin thinks it’s innocent, I believe trustmark park and the outlet mall received government funds.

Anonymous said...

9:42, Joel still lives in the metro and his old company is still thriving and still employs several hundred people in the metro. But what has that got to do with anything?

Anonymous said...

All of MS is federally funded.

This is a silly conversation.

Anonymous said...

@9:42–hey Bruce.

Anonymous said...

2:37 gets it right. that's very rare on this site.

Kingfish said...

JJ did. It busted some of the Kior stories. Bigger Pie hired a reporter who investigated and questioned Kemper as well as Haley's green projects.

Anonymous said...

I'd take Frank over Lumumba all day, every day.

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Trollfest '09

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.

Note: Security provided by INS.

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.

Note: Security provided by INS