Friday, December 21, 2012

Martavius Jones Declares War on David Pickler

Tuesday night's Shelby County School Board meeting was crazy.  ONE of the reasons that the Board did not begin working on its agenda for over two hours after its start time was due to a surprise resolution from Martavius Jones.

The resolution was to ask for the immediate resignation of School Board Commissioner, and former Chair/President David Pickler.  The result was the constitution of a long-dormant ethics committee, to be made up of Vice-Chair Teresa Jones, Commissioner David Reaves, and newly-named Commissioner Reggie Love.

Commissioner M. Jones basically claims that Commissioner Pickler voted in a favor of a resolution that personally financially benefitted Commissioner Pickler, without any disclosure of what Commissioner M. Jones calls a conflict of interest.  [January 6, 2013 update:  here's a better explanation of the issue.]

My full commentary on this resolution will follow, but since I haven't seen it posted in the media, please feel free to read it here.  My first thought is that it depends on whether Commissioner M. Jones has his facts correct.  Commissioner Pickler told the Board (while commenting much later during the meeting) that he would provide a full report on the allegations in the resolution in the near future.

I guess we'll find out.

I've been discouraged that even though this resolution was read into "the record" at Tuesday night's meeting, the document does not appear to be publicly available.  It is, without a doubt, a public document.  None of the media has published it, and it is not available on the website of either Memphis City Schools or Shelby County Schools.  Whether the resolution passes or not, and particularly because it is the subject of a committee's formation and what will be the committee's investigation, the public should have had immediate access to the full document and its supporting documentation.

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