SOUTHAVEN, MS (abc24.com) - Is Southaven Mayor Greg Davis finally catching a break?
For months he's been the focus of civil and criminal investigations over how he spent city money, and also how he's paid. Davis makes more than most public officials in the state, earning more than Mississippi's governor.
The city's board of aldermen has been questioning whether part of the money Davis earns is illegal. Tuesday, the board got an answer from the Mississippi Attorney General, saying the mayor is in the clear.
In February the city attorney sent the state a letter asking if 3 payments Davis was being paid were legal. They total $43,000, including education and longevity stipends and money from the city water department.
An official opinion letter from AG Jim Hood states that all of those payments are legal since they were approved by the board and included in the budget.
Davis is still being paid the stipends; the board removed the water payment earlier this year. As to whether this opinion will affect that, aldermen say letter or no letter, nothing changes as far as they are concerned.
"In my opinion this doesn't change a thing right now," said Southaven Alderman Ronnie Hale. "It doesn't address the two stipends enough. It doesn't give us enough of a reason anywhere to reverse the decision to remove the $35,000."
Aldermen have disagreements over how the letter was worded. They've sent a second letter to the state asking more detailed questions on the stipends. They are expecting an answer back in the next few weeks.