Interest money

Text Messages Link Favre, Welfare Money, Volleyball Center – Leavenworth Times

Associated press

The governor of Mississippi in 2017 was “on board” with a plan to have a nonprofit group pay Brett Favre more than $1 million in welfare grants so that the retired quarterback from the NFL could help fund a college volleyball facility, according to a text message between Favre and the association’s director.

Court documents filed Monday by an attorney for the Mississippi Community Education Center contain text messages between Favre and the center’s executive director, Nancy New, that include references to Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, who left office in 2020.

Nancy New and her son, Zachary New, who helped run the nonprofit, pleaded guilty in April to charges of embezzling social funds meant to help some of the country’s poorest people. They are awaiting sentencing and have agreed to testify against others in Mississippi’s biggest public corruption case in decades.

In May, the Mississippi Department of Social Services filed a civil lawsuit against Favre, three former professional wrestlers, and several other individuals and businesses in an attempt to recover millions of mis-spent welfare dollars. The lawsuit said the defendants had “wasted” more than $20 million from the anti-poverty program of temporary assistance to needy families.

In pleading guilty, Nancy and Zachary New admitted to having a hand in spending $4 million in welfare for a volleyball facility at the University of Southern Mississippi.

The mother and son also admitted to donating welfare funds to Prevacus Inc., a Florida-based company trying to develop a concussion drug. Favre has stated in interviews that he supports Prevacus.

The Mississippi state court filing included text exchanges between Favre and Nancy New about arranging payment for the Mississippi Department of Social Services through the nonprofit in Favre. for speaking engagements, Favre then saying he would direct the money to the volleyball facility.

Favre played football at the University of Southern Mississippi before going to the NFL in 1991, and his daughter started playing on the volleyball team there in 2017. According to court documents, Favre texted Nancy New on Aug. 3, 2017, “If you were to pay me, can the media find out where it came from and how much anyway?”

Nancy New replied, “No, we never had that information made public. I understand, though, that you’re uncomfortable about it. Let’s see what happens on Monday with the conversation with some people from Southern. May “Maybe it’ll click with them. Hopefully.”

Favre replied, “Okay thank you.” The next day, Nancy New texted Favre: “Wow, I just hung up on Phil Bryant! He’s on board with us! We are going to do it !”

Favre replied, “Great, I needed to hear that for sure.”

Bryant, a Republican, served two terms and governor and was unable to run again in 2019 due to term limits. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi.

In a July 11 court filing, Nancy New’s attorney wrote that Bryant asked her to pay Favre $1.1 million in welfare through the Mississippi Community Education Center for “taking speaking at events, keynote speeches, radio and promotional events and business partner development”. A spokesperson for Bryant said in July that the allegations against the former governor were false and that Bryant had asked the state auditor to investigate possible welfare fraud.

Favre has not been charged with any criminal act. Mississippi auditor Shad White said Favre was paid for speeches but did not show up. Favre repaid the money, but White said in October that Favre still owed $228,000 in interest.