Tuesday, September 20, 2022

How Jackson's Water System Collapsed

Now it's JJ's turn to tell the REST of the story. 

Much has been said in the media about the Jackson water crisis by reporters who are experts on everything and knowledgeable about nothing.  They blame the flooding of the O.B. Curtis plant, white flight, racism, and a mean ole legislature that refuses to help Jackson.  Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba wasn't about to discourage such tales of woe as he sought to avoid any responsibility for the catastrophe that happened on his watch.  Well, perhaps it's time to tell the real story of how the Jackson water treatment system fell apart, media be damned.

The O.B. Curtis water treatment plant opened in 1993 with a treatment capacity of 25 million gallons per day. The plant used a conventional filter system. The J.H. Fewell plant treated up to 50 million gallons per day. Part of Fewell was built in 1914 but it was expanded several times over the years. However, the plant was not built to handle sludge so MDEQ urged Jackson to replace the plant with another source of water in the late 1990's.  

Jackson built the membrane side of the O.B. Curtis plant in 2007, doubling capacity to 50 million gallons per day. The expansion allowed Fewell to reduce production to 20 million gallons per day. Thankfully, Jackson never shut down the workhorse by the Waterworks Curve.

Read those two paragraphs again.  Despite all the shrieks about the old and worn out O.B. Curtis plant in the national media, the plant is fairly young.  Such plants are supposed to have much longer lives than the NFL stadiums that seem to be replaced every 25 years now.  Half of the plant is 29 years old while the other half is only 15 years old.  However, actual facts don't fit the media narrative so the facts are ignored by all, including the mayor.   

Such a narrative may be convenient but is totally at odds with reality: Jackson receives more tax revenue than ever despite "the loss of its tax base."  Even if such were not true, the loss of the tax base should not affect the water treatment system.  

The water treatment system is a stand-alone enterprise that should fund itself.  How a public utility works is simple enough to understand, even for reporters.   Set the rates, bill the customers, collect from the customers, and cut off service when the customer does not pay.   The rates should reflect what it costs to provide service, perform maintenance, and make improvements as needed.  Unfortunately, such reductive analysis places more blame on Jackson than it does racism, hence its downplay by both the media and the mayor.  

To truly understand how Jackson's water system collapsed, one must go back in time ten years ago to the Siemens project, the original sin from which all Jackson's water problems flow.  As 2013 mayoral candidate Jonathan Lee warned, the Siemens project blew up the water system worse than anyone could imagine.


Siemen's Project

Mayor Harvey Johnson conjured up the $90 million Siemens project in 2012.  Siemens promised to replace Jackson's water meters with new-fangled models that would yield $123 million in savings through more accurate billing.  Dazzled by the nine-figure savings, Election Man conned the City Council into issuing a no-bid contract to Siemens at the end of 2012, six months before he left office.   

Unfortunately, the Siemens deal turned into a Predators Ball of sorts for Jackson.  The Mayor's financial consultant roped Jackson along into this bad bond deal as he walked out with a $182,000 fee.  He recently pleaded guilty to fraud on a bond deal while the SEC permanently revoked his license.  As bond pimps raked in fees, the Mayor forced his "contractor" buddies down Siemens' throat under the guise of minority participation.  Unqualified contractors were added to the project, driving up costs while lowering the quality of the work.  As is too often the case in Mississippi, quality is ignored when pockets are stuffed and the Siemens project was no exception. 

The Siemens project may have promised more money but it instead delivered chaos, breaking the billing system.  Thousands of customers stopped received bills while thousands more received "crazy bills" as their bills jumped to thousands of dollars.  Frustrated customers sought help in vain as phone calls to customer service often went unanswered.  The billing debacle turned into a volcano that blew up the water/sewer when it erupted and erupted it did. 

The Destruction of Jackson Water/Sewer System Finances

Mayor Lumumba's father, Chokwe Lumumba, replaced Mayor Johnson in July 2013 but unexpectedly died in February 2014. Councilman Tony Yarber became mayor in 2014 as the billing fiasco spiraled out of control. Outrage grew until a panicked Yarber administration told customers not to pay their bills as it issued a moratorium on water cutoffs in 2016 and 2017. Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba removed the moratorium after he assumed the purple in July 2017. The bout of financial responsibility did not last as Mayor Lumumba quietly reinstated the moratorium in May 2020 without informing the public nor the City Council.  The moratorium remained secret until this website broke the story in June 2021.

Cutting off the cutoffs had predictable results. Tell people they don’t have to pay their bills and guess what? They don’t pay their bills. The combination of the billing debacle and the moratorium on disconnects cratered Jackson’s water/sewer revenue.

How deep was the crater? The Lumumba administration stated at a 2021 press conference Jackson suffered nearly $40 million in uncollected water bills from 14,588 active accounts, including stranded bills. While so-called journalists sneer at “blaming” customers who didn’t pay their bills, the income statements told a different story as the old adage of following the money was never more true.

after meter installation began:

*Operating income fell from $7 million in 2012 to -$17 million in 2019. It climbed back to -$10 million in 2020 – after it received a $14 million infusion of Siemens settlement funds. 


 

*Cash on Hand disappeared as it fell from $13 million in 2014 to $0.0 in 2017 where it remained for years.

 


*Accounts Receivables skyrocketed from $25 million in 2013 to $55 million in 2018.

*Water sales fell from $70 million in 2014 to $48 million in 2020.

 

Click on image to enlarge.

The charts all have one thing in common: they start going in the wrong direction within two years after the approval of the Siemens project.


Mayor Lumumba sued Siemens for $225 million in 2019.  The principal and interest was $200 million over the life of the bonds.  However, the city settled for $90 million in 2020. Only $14 million of the settlement went into the water/sewer system while $30 million went to attorneys, including a criminal defense attorney who had questionable expertise on such matters. The rest of the settlement repaid various loans. 

What does it all mean? It means there was no revenue to fix things.  No revenue to hire staff.  No revenue to purchase chemicals or equipment (as shown in a water operator's emails).  No staff  meant no maintenance. More and more of the plant depended on back-up parts as the first-line parts failed, never replaced.   The city was forced to use the general fund budget to shore up the water/sewer budget, almost unheard of in an American city. 

 

Myth: Jackson Went Broke Because of White Flight

As Jackson’s water/sewer system crumbled, the media drooled as it pulled out a familiar scapegoat: racism. It was a convenient trope requiring no analysis: Whites left Jackson, taking precious dollars with them to the burbs while the state was blamed for not giving Jackson a blank check.

Following the money tells a different story although it might be a bit much to expect reporters to actually read Jackson’s financial statements as most of them are ignorant on such things. More than a few probably think a debit is the sound of a frog. However, annual audits show more money than ever is going into Jackson’s coffers. Does this look like Jackson’s tax revenue “disappeared”?



* Total revenue increased from $180 million in 2003 to $264 million in 2020.

*Property tax revenue rose from $59 million in 2002 to $79 million in 2020. Does that sound like disappearing property taxes?

*Sales tax & other revenue increased from $36 million in 2002 to $54 million in 2020.

The media ignores this picture because it doesn’t fit the narrative of a broke city ruined by whites fleeing en masse because they are scared of blacks. It is much easier to blame racism than report that as Jackson collected more, it served less.

Who is in Charge?

Jackson is a $300 million enterprise yet its leaders lack any management experience. Mayor Lumumba practiced law in a small firm prior to becoming Mayor at age 34. The Chief of Staff was a Jackson State University professor. The mayor’s first Chief Administrative Officer was a JSU music professor. His next CAO was an architect. The architect moved over to run Public Works after a few months even though he had no experience in such matters. The current CAO was a customer service manager at Entergy. Dickens comes to mind:

"Military officers destitute of military knowledge; naval officers with no idea of a ship; civil officers without a notion of affairs; brazen ecclesiastics, of the worst world worldly, with sensual eyes, loose tongues, and looser lives; all totally unfit for their several callings, all lying horribly in pretending to belong to them, but all nearly or remotely of the order of Monseigneur, and therefore foisted on all public employments from which anything was to be got” (A Tale of Two Cities, Book II, Chapter VII)

No managers means simple management tasks don’t get done. Job openings for desperately needed positions are not posted online. No managers means shucking and jiving the health department while never taking its warnings seriously. No managers means not firing employees when they should be fired. No managers means nothing gets done nor is anyone held accountable. No managers means the Fewell plant comes within hours of shutting down this summer because no one could agree on ordering much-needed chemicals. No managers means making excuses matters more than making things happen.

No managers is how you blow off the EPA and allow a water system to fall apart through incompetence and neglect.

Orders & Coverups

The Mississippi State Department of Health began sounding the alarm on the water system in 2016. Successive administrations blew off the Health Department until the agency went running to big brother EPA near the end of 2019.

The EPA inspected the water treatment plants in February 2020 and discovered they were falling apart due to neglect, incompetence, and a shortage of employees. The agency issued an Emergency Administrative Order in March 2020 that is filled with crucial but eye-glazing details.

The lack of a technician meant "continuous monitoring equipment" at O.B. Curtis was "not repaired or calibrated" for over three years. pH meters, flow measurement devices, and other crucial equipment were not maintained. The continuous pH meters were off by up to 2 units in some cases. Plant operators were somewhat operating in the dark as they simply could not know the quality of the water they were treating. One-third of the south Jackson wells were out of action. 

The staff didn’t conduct jar tests even though the system could not determine turbidity. No one knew if the membrane filters worked because no maintenance was performed. The UV filters used to disinfect water went offline for weeks at a time. A multitude of cheap parts did not work even though they are easy to replace. The sludge handling facility was inoperable. Record management, a foundation of water system management, was sloppy or at times non-existent.
 

 

Jackson's negligence didn't end with the water treatment plants.  The city ignored all federal laws requiring Jackson to create and implement a lead service line replace program for years.  Flint, Michigan, anyone? 

The order set various deadlines for repairs and reports but Jackson repeatedly blew off the deadlines. 

Mayor Lumumba kept the EPA emergency administrative order secret for over a year until this website broke the news of its existence in April 2021. Mayor Lumumba obfuscated, calling the order a "letter" or an "administrative process gap" at times as he tried mightily to avoid all talk of the order. 

The Mayor refused to discuss the order with the City Council except behind closed doors. Mayor Lumumba told a Councilman, a West Point graduate no less, the order was “over your head” when the Councilman wanted to discuss the order at a City Council meeting.  

No chutzpah was too small for the mayor as he blamed the public for being "ill-informed" about the orderr as he quashed all discussion. When the order was mentioned, Mayor Lumumba deflected as he claimed the EPA said the water was safe to drink. 
 
The water might have been safe to drink but the EPA order covered the working condition of the water treatment plants, not the quality of the drinking water. Big difference. Big, huge difference. It does not matter if the water is safe if there is no water to drink. 

The Perfect Storm Arrives

While the Mayor covered up, the system veered towards collapse. Health Department employees prophetically warned in a June 2021 internal email:

This year has shown that the City of Jackson’s Water system is rapidly building toward a “perfect storm”: 1) Poor asset management and maintenance, 2) financial difficulties with an unwillingness to spend needed funds, and 3) the inability to consistently achieve compliance with various provisions of the SDWA (Safe Drinking Water Act). Considering the NEIC’s visit in February 2020, I believe that we can agree that the city is going in a negative direction. Logs indicated system components are being stretched to their breakpoint and membrane trains are one continuous failed MIT away from a shutdown along with logbook statements such as “called J. H. Fewell to go up on high service flows per M. Carter due to customer low pressure calls”. Plants are on the edge of failure. Items that are repeatedly reported by upper management as functional or repaired are continuously reported by plant staff as having issues or failing in the WOR and the Operator log submissions (specifically the MIT system for trains). we are very concerned about the city of Jackson’s growing amount of mechanical issues at the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Plant and overall its ability to maintain adequate production of safe drinking water for its customers.

In other words, the Lumumba administration lied about the water treatment plants as they fell apart.

The perfect storm came in the form of the February 2021 double ice storm that crippled Jackson. The city lost water pressure for a week although some areas lost water service for a month. Desperate residents got water out of creeks just to flush their toilets. Icy roads made it difficult for many to get water while the same conditions prevented stores from opening or restocking.

The media descended upon Jackson for what would not be the last time, asking how an American city could go without water. The mayor stood ready with his usual arsenal of answers. White flight destroyed the city’s tax base. The state wouldn’t give the mayor a blank check. Racist city leaders ignored the south and west Jackson when they built the water plants.  Such claims became a mantra, never challenged.  The real truth was Jackson received more revenue than ever, but the Siemens fiasco transformed a healthy water/sewer system into a cripple unable to take care of itself. 

Lies continued to roll as the media latched on to the mayor’s every word. Mayor Lumumba repeatedly blamed the state, telling national media such as the New York Times the state did not pay its water bills.  The lapdogs slurped it all up with nary a challenging word. Such things are not done today, you understand.   Yet again, the mayor lied and lied repeatedly about the unpaid water bills. 

 This website dug into the weeds and published records showing the state did indeed pay for its water, usually over $1 million per year. The mayor backtracked,   claiming at a press conference he was "misinformed" as the media took him at his word.  It would not be the last time the mayor was so “misinformed.”

Neglect and incompetence continued to plague O.B. Curtis.  A fire broke out at the plant in April 2021, ,knocking out an electrical panel that controlled several pumps. Water production fell as the plant operated on the proverbial shoestring. The media wondered nine months later why the pumps were not yet fixed. The mayor said "supply-chain problems" kept  Jackson from getting the electrical panel it needed to bring the pumps back online.

However, JJ caught the mayor shucking and jiving yet again. Health Department emails in December showed the Lumumba administration never ordered the electrical panel despite his claims to the contrary.  The agency told Jackson to order the part within thirty days. Jackson finally did so –the day before the deadline expired in January. The panel finally arrived in May, a year after the fire.

More problems continued. The system lost water pressure in November 2021. The Lumumba administration said the injection of “bad batch of chemicals” into the system in November caused system pressure to drop to 65 psi. The “bad batch” indeed caused problems but that is not what crashed the system.

Health Department emails yet again told the real story as they revealed the lines feeding the chemicals into the injection point were clogged and did not work. Such lines are supposed to have back-up lines but those were the back-up lines. Health Department representatives caught a plant employee using a rubber hose to inject the needed chemicals. Yet again, the failure to maintain and replace equipment broke the Jackson water system while the administration hid the truth.   

Total Collapse

The system limped along as Jackson endured five boil water notices in 18 months. Residents grew battle-weary while restaurants struggled survive. Business owners publicly pleaded with everyone and anyone who would listen to fix the water system. Such was the status quo in the summer of 2022.

The O.B. Curtis plant suffered an ammonia leak that interrupted treatment for “more than two days" in June. However, the city only issued a boil water notice and warned some areas might lack water pressure. The city did not report the ammonia leak nor the evacuation of the employees to the public nor  the Health Department. The media discovered the leak when a report of the leak appeared on the National Response Center’s website.  The Chief of Staff refused to answer any questions on whether any employees were injured, citing HIPAA.  Noticing a pattern? 

Through it all, the plants lacked qualified personnel, including precious Class A water operators. The EPA noted the lack of Class A operators in its 2020 order yet Mayor Lumumba said they were almost impossible to find due to the dual filtration systems at O.B. Curtis even though earlier Mayors kept the plants staffed. 

A fed-up EPA ordered Jackson to answer basic questions such as how many vacancies existed, all correspondence about staffing issues, and how the water system maintained pressure when part of O.B. Curtis was out of action. Jackson being Jackson, the Lumumba administration submitted the answers after the deadline.

The EPA inspected the plants in March 2022 and found the water treatment system was still going backwards despite the federal government's efforts to help Jackson. The agency warned in July the system was close to failure.

The system continued to suffer from a lack of operators. No one could take time off unless someone worked extra hours. The system suffered an “exodus” of employees due to low pay. “Malfunctioning water meters” caused water revenue to fall a full third since 2016, depriving the system of the money it needed to operate. Jackson suffered triple the number of average line breaks for such a system. The water at both plants was frequently outside the recommended pH.

Amargeddon almost struck in July when Fewell came within hours of closing due to a lack of necessary chemicals. Public works officials bickered over purchasing the chemicals as precious days ticked away. Jackson finally purchased the chemicals on the same day the plant would have shut down.

The Health Department issued a boil-water notice for Jackson in July as well although  Mayor Lumumba heatedly disputed the order, claiming the water was safe. He even said the agency's leadership disagreed with its own staff as he took his brinkmanship to the limit.  Behind the scenes, Health Department officials knew the real state of the water system, despite Mayor Lumumba's protestations. 

Doomsday finally arrived in the form of a flood. A 24-hour rainstorm dumped over five inches of water on the Jackson metro area. The O.B. Curtis plant easily survived the 2020 and 2014 floods but its luck finally gave out although flooding did not reach the plant.  JJ drone photos shot at 4 PM on August 29 show the floodwaters never came close to the plant.  Mayor Lumumba tried to say they were taken before the flood.  Sorry, Mr. Mayor.  Former 30-year Clarion-Ledger photographer Rick Guy shot those photos for JJ.  

Floodwater upriver changed the chemical composition of the lake that provides Jackson’s water. Lacking the staff and working equipment to handle the change, the plant failed. Two pumps were already down while the plant depended on smaller backups. More problems developed as homes and businesses began reporting a loss of water service on August 20. Jackson’s water treatment system crashed. Faced with no other choice, the state moved in and took over the water treatment plants.

Reporters moved in with patented phony outrage and "analysis" as they pulled out their well-worn playbooks. Some even reported O.B. Curtis flooded even though floodwaters never reached the plant. The networks ignored their own local reporters who knew the story backwards and forwards as their national reporters parachuted in to Jackson, asked their cookie cutter questions about equity and environmental racism, and went back home to their bubbles.  

Instead of investigating, the media spoke to the one person who had the strongest motive to lie and lie he did as Mayor Lumumba appeared in countless interviews, spinning tale after tale of how it was all the fault of Republicans.  Unfortunately for all, the media reported it all as fact, not to be questioned. Such is the state of modern journalism today.   Why report reality when it can be manufactured? 

The reality is a decade of incompetence blew up Jackson's water system.  Mayor Johnson destroyed the billing system with his Siemen's project.  Mayors Yarber and Lumumba cut off the cut offs, depriving the water/sewer system of much needed revenue.  Mayor Lumumba covered up the truth as the water treatment plants fell apart on his watch and that, my friends, is the bottom line.  


129 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well done.

Anonymous said...

Excellent reporting. Wish the national media who have been covering this story would read this.

Anonymous said...

That's shucking the corn KF! Nicely done with facts and truths. This shoould be sent to every media outlet that screamed "the narrative" Lumumba and his band of liberals wanted pushed.

And Marcus Wallace now wants to run for mayor. F that guy.

Anonymous said...

Well done indeed!

A couple of small nits. One, while Election Man ginned up Siemens, the then City Council was all aboard because the contractors were tied to them, too. Second, Lumumba the father had an off-ramp after he came into office and initially headed that way - until certain contractors were replaced with ones he preferred. Third, the City still had $20 million or so under Yarber who was advised not to pay that to Siemens, but caved.

Thank you KF for writing the story others are too lazy, scared or inept to write.

Anonymous said...

That’s way over their head because facts are in the way. It is and will always be a color of the skin issue. The other Bottom Line.

Anonymous said...

That would be a great story for a “60 Minutes “, but unfortunately if they did it today the story would Lubumba’s version not the truth.

Anonymous said...

Great job on the article it is good to see there is still journalism integrity out there. It is sad to watch this city deteriorate to the point to which it has. The white flight is not a myth it is real and there are reasons for it and its not only whites leaving. You have people of all races that have no desire to live in this city. A few years ago there was a city councilman encouraging people to throw rocks and bottles and police. You have a mayor whose major campaign theme was that he was going to make the City of Jackson the most radical city in America and he is fulfilling his promise. Decent hard working people that believe in the nuclear family do not want to to live in the most radical city in America. People want to live where you have law and order and adequate city services and a good education system. It has nothing to do with race Chokwe, you are the biggest problem Jackson has.

Anonymous said...

Why do I feel more and more in favor of Lumumba and his lackeys heading to the clink over all this and more??

Anonymous said...

The truth hurts, as it should. Great reporting! Standing by for retractions from the MSM in...never.

Anonymous said...

My uncle asked about the aging pipes in the late 70s when he was with the fire department. He was told to be quiet. The aging infrastructure in Jackson was well known decades ago. He knew if there was more than 2 fires in certain areas, Jackson could not properly respond. Let's just sweep this under the rug and let someone else deal with it.

Anonymous said...

Is there still a moratorium on cutoffs?

Anonymous said...

This blog deserves a Pulitzer Prize.

Anonymous said...

If someone reads this article, and doesn't understand the problem, they don't want to know.

Sadly, some can't get past the racist indoctrination to see and recognize the truth.

Anonymous said...

How corrupt or sadly how stupid does councilman Brian Grizzell look now that he ran to public microphone claiming a billion dollars per plant is needed. I’m telling you now if this isn’t a true evaluation of his intelligence level nothing is. He has several drive thru diplomas I’m aware of that. He’s really a total moron and a major liability. This man isn’t qualified to bag your groceries. Brian “no brain” Grizzell

Anonymous said...

Now that is journalism. Good job.

Anonymous said...

"Flight" of any color is the symptom, not the cause. I have five black families in my small Madison subdivision and they all moved here from Jackson.

Anonymous said...

Work had an article showing that the state and feds got the state $200,000,000

https://www.wtok.com/2022/09/08/reeves-claims-miss-gave-jackson-200m-infrastructure-where-did-that-money-come/

Anonymous said...

Certain politicians prey on the facts of Jackson's past history to ignore the facts of the present day. The confused voters who are often semi-literate at best, rely only on the their distrust of "the white folks in charge" and fall for any excuse which shifts the blame away from the hustlers in their midst who are making their lives miserable. The sham is reinforced on the national level by a media which plays the narrative they have been taught rather than pursuing the facts. It's good that someone is actually reporting the FACTS even though they may be ignored by the very people who need to know them.

Anonymous said...

And now the pimp Marcus Wallace wants to be mayor. Who says pimpin' ain't easy?

Stuff About ZeroBear PolyBear said...

In 100% seriousness I ask, "How can I submitt this investigative report for consideration to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize for factual reporting?"

Bravo KF! Your efforts to share fact are appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Superbly written, KF. Thank you!

How, if at all, does this summary get to the national media outlets?

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your investment of time & resources in this. It is definitely an eye opener. Good Lord!!

Follow the money.

Anonymous said...

KF,I agree that Jackson's mayor bet on
the wrong politically driven priorities...the what Jackson citizens see not the hidden improvements. I strongly disagree that the age of the is relevant. It's like saying a 30 year old house that has been subjected to flood damage and contaminants and not properly repaired or maintained is going to be the same as one not suffering those same needs for attention. Add to the aging lead pipes in an older city. A water treatment plant that didn't experience stress and was properly maintained ages much faster, just like a home would if you allowed the roof to leak.

Also, you do not compare revenues to other Mississippi cities or the decline in property assessment values.
You missed that Madison County has over $1.25 billion in property values to tax. And, property taxes are the major revenue source for towns and cities.
Nor have you compared how Hinds County and the City of Jackson compares in receiving money for roads,highways and bridges despite having the largest population. And, ignore where State and Federal revenues go or DON'T.
You ignore that funds recieved have other demands including law enforcement and jails and courts.

There's something too called " the cash value of dollars". You'd need slightly over $1.86 to have the same value in 1993 as today. So that's nearly twice as much revenue just to stay even. And THAT doesn't account for the global economic specific peculiarities of the kind of equipment needs and expertise needed for a water treatment plant.

The potholes on my street in my neighborhood are filled within 30 days for the first time ever. And, THAT has to do with a tragic death on Ridgewood Rd .
I've HAD it with politics and politicians. Politics is about the problem du jour that will get the biggest emotional reaction, not the long-range critical needs of a society which are often not " seen" or too complex in nature for knee jerk debate team competitions that rarely even would win a college level debate competition.

Anonymous said...

10:16 Most of the "national media" is not interested. It's not "Mississippi Burning".

Anonymous said...

Good job KF. IMO, most telling FACT that relates to Lamumbalot being a POS is hiding the EPA letter. If it had been released to the public (and CoJ council), I like to believe he wouldn’t have been re-elected. We shall see in the future. He needs to face criminal charges AND be held personally responsible in a half dozen lawsuits

Anonymous said...

10:25 potholes in my neighborhood take a year or longer to repaired. Then they are selective on those to repair.

Anonymous said...

A Potemkin village of habitual lies.

Reporting you'll never see from the Donna Ladd Fraud outlets or the Barksdalers.

Krusatyr said...

WSJ provided an accurate synopsis last week, rare among all media. Was KF its local source? Regardless, well done, Fish.

Kingfish said...

Except property taxes should have NOTHING to do with the water/sewer system.

It is a public utility, an enterprise. It is supposed to stand alone, funding its own maintenance and upkeep. When you need to fund projects, you can also issue revenue bonds that are paid for by the enterprise fund of that department. It's not that hard for you to understand. Set rates, bill, collect, cut off when needed. Rinse, repeat.

The question is why did Jackson's water/sewer department become a money-losing operation when it should have been earning millions in profits for the city.

Anonymous said...

@10:25 AM Dr. Omari, thanks for your input.

Anonymous said...

@10:25 Water/sewer systems should never be operated from sales tax or property tax monies. They are operated from the rate base. So they should have their own budget and taxes are not part of the revenue stream. Garbage pick up is the same way. Taxes should pay for items that don't have a revenue sources (streets, drainage, fire, etc.). You sent up an enterprise fund.

So the gain/loss of tax base should never affect the water/sewer department in a positive or negative manner. Now admittedly the gain/loss of rate payer can affect the water/sewer department (such as an empty house or building).

Lumumba = Epic Fail said...

Compounding the problems was when water bills don't get paid, sewer and garbage collection bills also didn't get paid.

Anonymous said...

The only thing you left out, and it's important, is all of the petty corruption in the water dept that was discovered after the Seimens project. Meter readers taking kickbacks to record lower numbers or not report straight pipes, clerks embezzling, there was even a WD employee who was straight piping even though he lived in the city. One would have thought to check the address his W2 is sent to.
I happen to think this was the biggest reason for the failure of Seimens. It was sabotaged by corrupt city employees hoping to hide theif fraud. All computer systems suffer from garbage in/garbage out.
I can't prove all that, other than the arrests, but the dots connect.

Anonymous said...

Good work KF.

Anonymous said...

@10:25 Here is a city managed correctly.

Water/sewer department funded by the water/sewer rates. It's basically funded as a stand-alone department through an enterprise fund. Your revenue is water/sewer rates. Your expenses are labor, material, equipment, debt service, etc. You don't utilize any tax monies received by the city. Conversely, you don't take water/sewer revenue and pave a street or buy a police car.

Garbage funded the same as above. It's basically funded as a stand-along department through an enterprise fund.

Taxes (sales and property tax) help pay for fire trucks, police, streets, potholes, drainage, parks and rec, etc. That is because these items don't have a revenue source.

But in a properly run city, water/sewer operates and funds itself. That is a fact. Two mistakes that dumb cities make are (1) using tax money to help fund water/sewer and (2) using water/sewer revenue to pave a street, buy a fire truck, etc.

Anonymous said...

Nice job, Mr. Fish!

Anonymous said...

Tremendous reporting and journalism. An outstanding piece. Congratulations! Let's be really honest: Jackson has a street crisis (potholes and criminals), a water crisis (covered beautifully here), an economic crisis (of its own making), a leadership crisis, and more. And they all reflect incompetent and unsavory leadership.

Anonymous said...

yea boy ! Leave it to the amazing Kingfish to tell us the real story!
Thanks sir

Anonymous said...

They (the local media) all know the truth. They have been scared to dig deep into the water crisis because they know how dumb and thin-skinned Lying Lumumba is and feared losing access to exclusives interviews with him and his administration.

Anonymous said...

Grizzell was put in office as a "yes" vote for the Mayor. He is the brother of Vincent Grizzell who is the JPD officer in charge of the Mayor's protection detail. He will always be the first one to carry the Mayor's water. No pun intended.

Anonymous said...

September 20, 2022 at 10:25 AM -- You should run for mayor, because you SAF don't know how things work in a municipality.

This article needs to be submitted to every major media outlet, if for no other purpose than an entry on the Op Ed pages. Then, track who actually prints it vs those who take a pass.

Anonymous said...

A large majority of the citizens of the State of Mississippi fully understands why the City of Jackson is in terrible shape. They are not fooled by the lies of the mayor or the lies of his enablers in the media.

Anonymous said...

The blog owner is not from Jackson.
He didn’t grow up with boil water notices….cause he grew up in Louisiana.
The plants had to be what? Expanded and improved. Why? Because they failed to operate properly.
Prior administrations failed to perform maintenance on water and sewer lines. Completely.
Prior administrations kicked the can down the road.
The only thing that saved Jackson was the reduction in number of residents as these plants could not serve 230,000 residents when Jackson was that size.
The flight indeed affected the city financially….think how much MORE money Jackson would have with the whites who fled.

More importantly you provide no answer…just bitching and claiming “victim”

The real bottom line is is a panoply of events over time which led an antiquated and Ill constructed water plant system to fail when flooded….and it will happen again in the winter when it freezes.

You quoted Frank Melton but you sir are no Frank Melton. Frank was wrong in how he wanted to correct things….you just bitch for clicks and moan about the “media”

You need to take a few weeks off and move back to Louisiana

Anonymous said...

With the additions posted by 9:21 AM, this is a complete and accurate record of what happened. The result was completely unnecessary. The universally inaccurate national and regional reporting is the perfect final chapter. Good city management is apolitical. Jackson needs a new form of government.

Anonymous said...

Can't believe someone didn't call out KF as a racist for writing this.

Kingfish said...

Ah, here come the personal attacks. You don't know jack about me. Not at all.

and your narrative of the water system is completely wrong. But keep it up. You make more of a fool of yourself the more you write.

Anonymous said...

@12:12
He is too busy enjoying y’all blowing him to approve any criticism.

Anonymous said...

KF, why can the city not just take the tax land rolls and set a flat rate for water/sewer? $50 a household or something. Myself and others in my neighborhood do not even have meters on our water supply....they couldn't't shut us off if they wanted to. I can't even get a bill b/c they do not know my house exists! I would gladly pay a flat rate of $50 or $70 for water/sewer if they could just get it to me, and I am sure others would gladly too.

Anonymous said...

@10:25 a simple internet search will produce a calculator capable of figuring out the comparable values of the figures under the charts. Of the three figures listed, only Property Tax Revenue didn't hold it's own over the time period of 2002-2020. Total Revenue and Sales Tax & other revenue actually increased in the "cash value of the dollar."

I see that your time period is 1993-today, not the 2002/2003-2020 as was reported in the post. Was that deliberate to make the inflation seem worse or were you just in too big a hurry to deflect responsibility from those elected/appointed to manage?

Burke said...

A great piece, and many excellent comments. Let us pray that it will become a benchmark as we somehow make significant progress in our beloved city.

I pledge to do my best to increase the circulation of this article, locally and nationally. It's a long read, but now it's out there to be referred to as an example of first-rate journalism and to be applied as a measuring stick for calibrating the accuracy of public comments about its subject matter.

At some point in the near future, our mayor needs to own up to his failings as the manager of this city. We desperately need honesty and accountability.

Anonymous said...

I know you are a punk ass

Anonymous said...

12:10

I grew up in Jackson. I have lived here for over 50 years.

Do you know one of the primary reasons for the reservoir's build? It was to provide water to Jackson. Fewell does that downstream. Curtis was built to take advantage of the purpose of the reservoir.

Not because anything "failed". Curtis was expanded because of the same reason, taking advantage of the purpose of the reservoir. Not because anything "failed".

Prior administrations did not "kick the can down the road" in reference to maintenance and staffing at the water plants, which is the ONLY reason for where we are today. Water and sewer lines are, in no way, remotely tied to anything as to why the State had to come in and fix the water plants.

Flight hasn't cost the water/sewer anything. And flight hasn't reduced the city's income. Misspending from prior AND the current administration is at the core of Jackson's problems along with a very unfriendly business environment for a decade and the racial strife created by those who want to use race as the basis for a administering a city.

someone said...

O.B. Curtis lived lived around the corner from me on Columbus street
when i was a kid. He was city engineer and a good man. he would not be
happy with the water system failure. it would not have happened on his watch.

Unknown said...

12:16 PM
I mean all you're going to do is scream "racist". I doubt you're literate or tech-savvy enough to start your own blog and do your own research to start a competitor.

Anonymous said...

Just waiting for the complaints about 100 year old water pipes and how they should have been replaced in the 70s ... when the operational life of those pipes was then only 50 years.

Anonymous said...

@1210, He's not allowed to report on this because he's not from here?

Why does the mayor get to comment on it then? I thought he moved here from Detroit as a child?

Anonymous said...

Is there a solution?

Anonymous said...

@12:10
Your a moron
Kingfish lives in city of Jackson as do plenty of people on this site. I for one likely pay more in taxes than half of your city ward. Like it or not the NE Jackson Belhaven and Fondren area pay majority of the taxes in the whole damn city. Yet the whites are the problem. Hmmm!!! Makes no sense.

Anonymous said...

Great research of connecting the history of this debacle and pointing out that the regulators failed to do their jobs also.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Fish! It's interesting that I submitted two comments on the Clarion-Ledger website about a story posted today with residents whining about the water, but both comments were rejected. This is one reason residents are so misinformed. We lack a competent mass media. But, thank you again, Mr. Fish. Hold your head high.

Anonymous said...

The Clarion Ledger is dead!!! No one reads that paper. It’s liberal trash. Actually it’s not even local rarely do high school sports even make it in the paper. Sad but true.

Anonymous said...

PREACH!

Anonymous said...

@1:20 There is always a solution if anyone is truly interested in solving the issue. Privatization is the best solution, but I don't think that will happen. Here is what I think will happen. The water/sewer will go under the direction of a board. They will be similar to a utility district, or a municipal utility with its own charter and leadership structure (Canton Municipal Utilities for example). The board will hire a general manager who will hire staff and run it. This keeps the monies separate from the city functions. It will operate independently. The board will be made up of appointees. Maybe the mayor, governor, Lt. governor, Bennie Thompson, and the health department each get to appoint a board member. This solution has some merit, but it would ultimately come down to whether or not the 5 board members were capable of hiring a decent GM and allowing that GM to run it like a business without politics involved.

Anonymous said...

Kingfish,
This is outstanding reporting. The kind of reporting that should win awards. Thank you for the hours and hours of investigation and research that went into these findings. You are truly a gifted journalist. Thank you for sharing the truth with us here on JJ. You are appreciated!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey Fat Melvin the Racist, at (1st) 12:31! We've missed you!

Anonymous said...

Way to pin the tail on Ladoofus, KF!

Anonymous said...

Let’s put Brian “brainless” Grizzell in charge of it and spend the 2 billion he claimed Jackson needs. 😂
Scary people actually voted for this diploma mill loser. Sure he’s educated. He pulled to the drive thru and picked up his diploma a few times. All worthless.

Anonymous said...

@12:24 Feel free to send the COJ a $50 check every month for your service. I'm sure they will deposit it as appreciation for your generosity, no questions asked.

Anonymous said...

Eating popcorn in Rankin County waiting for the Jackson Banana Republic to fail so we can get a fed takeover and fix the shithole ala Detroit.

Anonymous said...

I still don't understand why the Siemens project didn't work. For all of Harvey Johnson's faults and bad ideas, saving money by investing in technology doesn't sound like a horrible idea. Was Jackson the testing ground for something that had never been done? I seem to recall that maybe Seimens allegation was that the system was never fully implemented by personnel at the City of Jackson. Was this just operator error?

Anonymous said...

Thank you KF for reporting. I am so over racism, finger pointing and passing the buck. Health and environmental laws should and do have major consequences up to and including crimson charges. Remember Erin Brocovich, PG&E in California? Praying their are no deaths or long term sickness like this; reporting accurate news is the Key to a healthy life for all people. Just because Lumumba is a Democrat does not give him a free ride to ignore laws that are set to protect health issues made by the Feds. This is a no brainer people. I do not want to see Mississippi movie a few years from now because others were afraid to stand up for the truth! 10:25 Shame on you for being part of the problem. Marcus Wallace did lots of work with MDOT in the late 90’s thru 2008 I believe. Perhaps do a FOIA and see how many contracts the State had issues with. 10:25 again if you had lost your only daughter because the COJ failed to properly cover a man hole in the road; no matter where you lived the COJ is at fault. May her family Rest In Peace knowing she was loved by God first and many. KF give us an address to mail letter to WSJ to support your reporting & know you are respected and loved.

Anonymous said...

I still don't understand why the Siemens project didn't work.

Wasn't a turnkey solution. That's 100% on Harvey for not recognizing it in advance.

Fly on the wall said...

3:29, I posted why the Siemens debacle didn’t work due to corruption and the inside power plays. But the it didn’t make it past the the ultimate censor as it involves several Rs. Everything in that post was factual but for whatever reason sometimes this blog likes to protect some big elephants.

Anonymous said...

It is so comforting to know that while reporters know nothing we have KF who knows everything.

Kingfish said...

You mean you named several people in allegations that are not verified. I'm just supposed to take your word for it and risk a slander suit and yes, they have the money to file such a suit and I would lose if its not true. It probably is true but I need more than just an anonymous saying "trust me".

But yeah, I'm the big, bad censor.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for always telling us the truth.
I'm very thankful for this site.
It's a shame our so-called media can't report objectively.

Anonymous said...

@4:05 Big homo troll doll too

Anonymous said...

@ September 20, 2022 at 3:29 PM

As I recall, a couple of key contributors:
The city requiring the use of minority contractors, and friends & family intermediaries -- whether or not they had any applicable experience or knowledge.
Misapplication of billing units (GPM vs CFM) in the software, which was the source of the outrageous water bills received.

Fly on the wall said...

Allegations?
D and C were the sales reps for Siemens that sold the water job. Fact.
D’s dad is a very influential R mayor who D used to open doors. Fact
D/R sold meters that didn’t work. Fact
They were the mueller distributors. Fact
They only used mueller meters in their projects to make more money. Fact.
Their company is out of business for several similar fraud water meter lawsuits in MS. Fact.

As for slander, you didn’t seem to have a problem posting about that mayor when he fired some city folks in Flowood several months ago.

Anonymous said...

Great question 3:29. I don't think I have ever heard an answer as to why the
Siemens project didn't work. Our city has a rep of not fixing much of anything includiong not even able to run a zoo. Siemens, on the other hand, has a rep of being a solid German company. Please someone tell me, why did the Siemens project fail????

Anonymous said...

September 20, 2022 at 12:31 PM, that's a strong rebuttal to all the facts presented in this article, would you care to add anything else?

Maybe you should consult with the Harvard graduate and try for a few more words.

KaptKangaroo said...

Well done.

The reach of JJ continues to expand... in influence.

Suck it Antar.

Anonymous said...

Jonathan Lee, that's a name I haven't heard in a while. 2013 was one more missed opportunity. Meanwhile they continue to fiddle.

Anonymous said...

@2:51
I’m one of the idiots that voted for brainless Grizzell… he knows my family and we all voted
For him. Needless
To say we won’t make that mistake
Again
Lord Jesus he’s an embarrassment

Anonymous said...

Cliff notes please.

Anonymous said...

3:29 Siemens had never paired the new meters with its billing system, so to that extent Jackson was Siemens’ guinea pig. Many of their meters were then installed incorrectly. The whole thing turned to shit real quick like when it became apparent that the meters did not transmit the data as advertised. Interestingly, the city’s good old-fashioned manual meter reading/billing system was chugging along just fine with 85-90%+ accuracy ratings. Siemens guaranteed 98%+ accuracy and a $120 million savings for the city over 15 years, and delivered a catastrophic fiasco. I haven’t done enough research of COJ vs Siemens litigation to understand why the city settled for anything less than actual and punitive damages. Siemens is a multibillion dollar international conglomerate and they fucking skated.

Anonymous said...

Great job. The Jackson media is so damn lazy they won't even copy and past this article. Too many facts get in the way of the Bulls*it. But really this needs to get out. Hey but they (Jacksonians) will re-elect every one of them.

Anonymous said...

One thing especially consistent in all of this is the current mayor's cover-ups & lying, most notably about the 2020 EPA Order. Word to the wise - bad news doesn't get better with age. It's much better to let the public know get it behind you & say what you're doing to fix the problems. This mayor has all the wrong instincts.

Anonymous said...

Great “reporting” KF!

The national media and their partners the Democrat party know their constituents, including the indoctrinated so-called educated ones, are too dumb to ask the obvious question; why the white (and black) flight???

It’s the CRIME Stupid!

Leftist Democrats love high crime and don’t even mind innocent children dying from stray bullets in order to control their cities – since if crime rates were low, then all of those white people they blame for their leftist Democrat incompetence problems - would move back in and vote their corrupt dumb asses out.

It’s 2 + 2 math that nobody ever talks about – it’s the CRIME Stupid!

Anonymous said...

Antar touts the Siemens settlement as one of his big accomplishments — as if that $90 million made the city whole. In reality, it’s one of his biggest deceits. The city took out $200 million in bonds to fund the $90 million contract price. The city will be paying off that $200 million for years. To make the city anywhere approaching whole, the settlement would’ve had to be to $250 million and change. Instead, the city settled for $90M - $30M attorneys fees and God knows only knows how many more millions were squandered. So the city got a grand total of $60 million against the $90 million paid to Siemens and the $200 million very real future. Jackson wasn’t even made 1/3 whole. Is that not just a little suspect?

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, BRAVO, KF. Great work.

Anonymous said...

How does this get to national media? Copy. Paste. Send. To the entire contact lists of NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, FOX, NYT, WAPO, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, LATimes and all the main online news outlets.

With due credit to and approval by KF, that is.

Anonymous said...

@6:58 PM, Siemens clearly recognized the bargain that the Lumumba chosen attorneys were presenting. The negotiations weren't about making the city whole but rather about providing Antar's pals with a quick pay day. Any number of firms here could have swung such a Siemens friendly deal.

Anonymous said...

The Jackson media is so damn lazy they won't even copy and past this article.

Don't put it past that braggadocio LeMaster to report something similar in a couple weeks and pass off the effort as his own. That is, of course, when he can find time away from his schedule playing local Twitter cop.

Anonymous said...

@12:10 - which is it - KF is not an Jacksonian or he is playing a victim? KF, as great as he is, cannot be both. If he is not living in Jackson, he can't be a victim but may emphasize with those who choose to stay in this disaster of a city. Your arguments are so irrational as to be laughable.
Thank you for KF for giving and honest and reasonable explanation for how this nightmare was created.
Those of you who blame white flight, get your facts right. The people - white and black and Asian and Hispanic - in nicer neighborhoods have begged for water bills, but the current admin does not care about collecting water bills. The people who choose to stay want to pay their fare share and support services, but we have a mayor that is not invested in his community. So sad.
I truly hope ALL Jacksonians come together and choose wisely next election cycle. Jackson can be good again, but it will take the citizens exercising their voting rights to improve anything.

Anonymous said...

Here's another KUDOS to Kingfish for being the most accurate source of reporting on this issue BY FAR. From a 20+ year resident who has personally watched all this evolve.... thank you for publishing the real facts.

Voters can't DO better until they KNOW better. How can they know any better when every major media outlet is merely regurgitating lies and political talking points, and deliberately omitting the facts??

It is so obvious this issue was seized as a national effort to foment racial angst in hopes of spurring minority turnout for democrats in the midterms (which otherwise tends to be low). Guess what, we're on to you.

Fellow Jacksonians, let's do better in the next election. Get informed. Review a variety of sources *from both sides* before you decide who to support. Forget 'what you heard' from your neighbor or your pastor (who may have been paid). Use your head. Believe your eyes, not your ears... your ears will lie to you. And remember

YOU WILL KNOW THEM BY THEIR FRUITS

not by their skin color.

Anonymous said...

Sir, nice work. In the mid 1980s many cities in Mississippi changed their form of government to a Strong Mayor form from the Mayor/council form. As you know, in a strong mayor form, the mayor is the administrative head of the city. In a mayor/council form there is a professional city manager that operates the city administration. Do you think the change in form of government has brought about this kind of problem over time? It seems that the lack of continuity paired with the election of folks with no leadership experience has had a lot to do with the deterioration of many cities across Mississippi. Thank you for your work.

Anonymous said...

The national news agency has forgotten Jackson! They are on to other stories Queen's Death, Bussing of immigrants to NYC & The Hamptons!
Inflation! Midterm elections.
I've lived in Jackson for 28 years. I'm full of Lead!

Anonymous said...

Kingfish lives in Jackson

Anonymous said...

Start by ridding of Chokwe
Then rid of Lee, Grizzell and anyone associated with Chokwe. Omari well her ass is just dumb and she will be out when Lumumba is out.

Anonymous said...

Swing and miss.
What an enormous nothingburger.
Mayor Lumumba has already won.

Anonymous said...

Jerry Mitchell ought to be calling you for a collaberation.

Or even Anna Wolf at Miss. Today.

Anonymous said...

Mayor Lumumba has already won.

Nope.

Anonymous said...

@8:36pm And thank you sir, great post also. Except for one thing - your statement:

"It seems that the lack of continuity paired with the election of folks with no [leadership experience] has had a lot to do with the deterioration of many cities across Mississippi" - it should say: "Operational management experience".

Mississippi is SATURATED with elected and appointed or nepotistic hires with no actual experience in performance management of personnel or utilization of a budget. Mississippi is swirling down the drain while everyone argues and postures for the press.

Anonymous said...

The voters in Jackson aren’t going to read all those words or comprehend all those charts and graphs. Most barely have more that a sixth grade education! That’s why they keep voting for the Harvey’s and Lumumba’s to begin with!

Anonymous said...

@7:29 I don’t know which is more outrageous — the settlement itself or the underlying fiasco. It galls me that the press never pushes back when Lumumba crows about the $90M settlement as his crowning achievement.

The entire COJ-Siemens debacle reeks of corruption from start to finish. Judging from comments here and elsewhere, there’s a good amount of highly specific speculation that’s at least on the “where there’s smoke there’s fire” level.* I just don’t have an inside track on any of it.

*The one about how a handful of low to mid level city employees sabotaged Siemens from behind their desktops was a new one for me, and struck me as the product of a fantasist’s fertile imagination. But, still, who comes up with something so seemingly random out of the clear blue?







Kingfish said...

Oh really? Where's the gossip? You call it a gossip blog. Prove it.

Anonymous said...

@2:20. You are correct. What are the actual qualifications to run for mayor in most cities in Mississippi? I honestly don’t know, but it’s probably be a resident, be age 21, and not be a felon. Then you are elected and given a huge city to operate when you really aren’t capable of operating a lemonade stand. To be a mayor, alderman, county supervisor, etc., you don’t have to have any business or management experience.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for presenting a great summary with dates and facts.

Anonymous said...

@Kingfish
Your obsession with the homosexual activities of DPS employees was very Perez-esque gossip.

Anonymous said...

Funny KF how you ask for an example of your behavior, and when someone gives the example, you are too chickenshit to approve the comment.

Anonymous said...

The left wing racists, will bring up the fact that Siemens worked with Hitler and the Nazi’s for their tin foil hat racist connections.

Anonymous said...

Odd that you don't have a single statement from Charles Williams, red flag #1. Even stranger that you omitted to include Tate's part in all of this, red flag #2. There's plenty of blame to go around, but only state leadership has acted with malicious intent. The criticism is well deserved.

Anonymous said...

"but only state leadership has acted with malicious intent... 9:20am

You really absolve Chuck from any "malicious intent" knowing factually about the 2020 EPA orders?

I mean, I suppose its possible that because he has the IQ of a ham sandwich he cannot be smart enough to formulate malicious intent?

Anonymous said...

The old Air force saying isn't mine, but it's true, you don't start getting flak until you're over the target.

The fire is weak, Kingfish, but you must be over the target.

Anonymous said...

Now, now, September 21, 2022 at 10:01 AM, we are talking about a Harvard graduate. I think your comment is demeaning to ham sandwiches everywhere.

I have yet to meet a ham sandwich that failed to the extent that the mayor has. Not only that, but I believe you owe the sandwiches an apology.

Anonymous said...

@10:01
We live in a progressivecivilized society, that doesn’t hold the developmentally deficient accountable for their actions.

Anonymous said...

Probably the best investigative journalistic piece written in Mississippi in years. Great job.

Cross-thread Credit said...

Siemens is the vendor providing the "free" covid tests sent to us via the mail, and they made in China.

Kingfish said...

That was one post from 8 years ago. Wow. You had to go back 8 years to find an example. I think you are the one who is fascinated.

It was a legit story. The tip came from another reporter. No one would talk to the reporter about it. I managed to confirm it with not one, not two, but three sources off the record. I called Warren Strain for comment, he practically shrieked "You know I can't comment on that", hehehehe.

Since I wrote the story, I have confirmed it with numerous DPS employees.

The story is a trooper had sex on the job and was not fired or suspended for it. The partner came from the MHP's trucker buddy program. I am sure you would allow your employees to have sex on the job with no repercussions, right? The enterprise journal wrote about it later as well. So yeah, it was all just gossip. Is that why the trooper was fired because he went after the MDOT officer who reported him when he saw him in court?

None of it was gossip. It was all true and worthy of reporting. Don't like it, too bad.

Anonymous said...

Well done, Kingfish! Thank you for providing FACTS.

Anonymous said...

Great job.
This is the best in depth piece ever posted on JJ.
Kudos for doing what nobody else bothered or could do.

Thank you JJ

Anonymous said...

Tell me everything I need to know about current Mayor by telling me everything about him and his "father".

Calm Down said...

Excellent reporting of facts.

Anonymous said...

Waiting for Garret and Mac to go ask Madison, Pearl, and Brandon for a minority set aside contract yet. These guys had been fleecing the black community for years as professional welfare recipients. SMDH

Anonymous said...

Can the current mayor not be charged with fraud? Or something? Anything? Why do the people who are most hurt by these debacles keep electing these people who have no experience?

Anonymous said...

The statement regarding the challenges businesses faced cannot go unnoticed. If businesses closed or were affected by this situation then why is not the MS Development Authority intervening? It seems no one wants to address the problem. It is a travesty.

Kingfish said...

Soc got the contract to demolish the old high school in Madison. He won it by presenting the lowest bid. He was told up front no change orders and to carry the necessary insurance as were the other bidders. He completed the job as required and did good work from what I understand. In other words, he played it straight and did fine.

Anonymous said...

I’d just like to point out that $180 mil in 03 = $255 mil in 2020



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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.

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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!!!

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