The Mayor apologized to the public and said there could not be a meeting since there was no quorum. There is, of course, a story here.
As we all know, the Board always meets prior to the public meeting in the little room in the back. And as we all suspect, it is in there that all the real decisions are made. They work out their deals in there and then come out and put on a pretty face for the public. However, something went wrong this time - or right maybe.
Alderman West was not there. Right before the public meeting, Aldermen Arceneaux-Mathis and Gray left the back room, continued on out of the building, and never returned. Hmmm! I think they were mad, don't you? Apparently, something was being voted on, and they were on the losing side of a 3-2 vote. I imagine they thought Aldermen West would vote with them, which would result in a tie vote - and the Mayor might break the tie. Better to leave and try again when everyone was there.
To justify this kind of extreme behavior, it must have been something really big and important. According to the Natchez Democrat, Aldermen Arceneaux-Mathis and Gray were not happy with the way things were being done in there. Alderman Gray was quoted as saying:
“I didn’t like the way we were handling business in executive session about the possible sale of city property. For legal purposes, I was not satisfied with what they were saying back there. . . I felt like to keep the city out of another lawsuit, it was best for me to just convene at another meeting instead of this meeting."And Aldermen Arceneaux-Mathis:
“We need to legally accept requests for proposals, not jump on any one bandwagon. That developer might be who we end up with, but we’re trying to be legal. We don’t jump with the first person we see. We need to look at everybody and be fair.”Here's another quote from the article:
"Gray said he was upset because the item in question was not on the agenda, and therefore shouldn’t be discussed."Now where have I heard that before? Hey! This is starting to look good. Do you think maybe we're going to have someone with ethics?
Just to make matters juicier, I heard a rumor that they were considering a casino! (Now, this is just a rumor, and I can't prove it.) They had better be really, really, really careful how they handle a casino, because there are some strong feelings about that here - and some of those feelings belong to people with money to file lawsuits. I don't know about any of you, but if they try to build another casino in Natchez, this is one grandmother who is going to throw herself in front of a bulldozer.