JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A hearing was held on Friday, July 8 in the case between the Jackson City Council and Jackson Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba over the city’s garbage contract.
Retired Court of Appeals Judge Larry E. Roberts, who was appointed as the special judge in the case, sided with the Jackson City Council.
Roberts said the mayor does not have the power to veto an “inaction” by the city council. In April, the city council voted 4-3 against the approval of the emergency contract for Richard’s Disposal.
“The failure to look at the complexity of these arguments, I think, has led to what I believe to be an error decision,” said the mayor.
Mayor Lumumba exercised his veto power after that decision, but council members claimed the mayor did not have veto power to override their decision.
“We’ve been singing that song since the beginning that it’s a legal, factual impossibility, and the judge just said, ‘Hey, Martin. Hey, John, you’re right. You can’t veto a negative bill,'” said Deshun T. Martin, the attorney for the Jackson City Council.
In early May, the mayor’s request for the Jackson garbage case to remain in Hinds County Circuit Court was denied.
Richard’s Disposal has been collecting trash for the city since April 1 after the mayor issued an emergency contract to the company.
When asked about the future of the company’s collection in Jackson, Lumumba declined to go into detail.