What are Ferriday council’s motives?

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 24, 2011

I have many questions concerning the payment of a legal fee to an attorney for the late Mayor Sammy Davis of Ferriday.

What are the motives of the Ferriday Town Council to be so insistent on paying a bill after 20 years? Do any council members stand to gain politically or materially from this vote? Is there an outside force coaching them?

I believe it is very unethical, if not illegal, for the council to vote to pay this bill, especially with no documentation of charges or payments. I also believe it would be very illegal for the mayor to sign a check for payment; considering the problems Ferriday has with water, sewage, drainage and streets.

Email newsletter signup

Is there a political motive to get the current mayor in legal trouble? Should the mayor get — in writing — immunity from prosecution from both the local district attorney’s office and the state of Louisiana if he were to sign a check for payment?

From my understanding of the law, the Davis estate is responsible for any attorney fees first. Then, after paying their attorney, they have a right to seek reimbursement from other sources. The state of Louisiana, who brought charges against Mayor Davis, has already denied payment. The Davis attorney may be correct in a statement that he cannot disclose the details of the billing and payments. But, with the permission from the Davis family, he can make those disclosures. The council should insist on this.

The Town of Ferriday has had money missing since Mr. Davis was in office. Maybe the reason our local district attorney and the state of Louisiana have failed to prosecute anyone is that it would cost more money (and votes) than it would be worth, just to have a conviction overturned on a technicality.

Do the council members know the difference in a “not guilty” verdict and an “acquittal?” An example would be for a person to commit a crime on video in the presence of police, judges, sheriffs and even district attorneys, to be found guilty by a jury, and to be acquitted by the Supreme Court because he was not read his “rights” properly.

This person may have the same end results as a “not guilty” verdict but is he really not guilty?

Ferriday residents and taxpayers should be outraged by the council’s actions. It does not matter what source the town money comes from (grants, Walmart, taxes, etc.), all the money belongs to the citizens of Ferriday and should be spent wisely and legally.

One solution to this issue, if the council is so determined to have the legal fee paid, would be to designate a portion of the “charitable” funds from the vendor they choose to bring video bingo to Ferriday.

This would not cost the citizens and taxpayers a dime.

Citizens should remember these questionable actions next year when they cast their votes. We need politicians that will make the citizens and the Town of Ferriday their top priority.

Morgan White

Ferriday resident