Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cadillac Tastes

Image: Vintage Cadillac seen on Cleveland Avenue.

Kudos both to Courier News reporter Mark Spivey and local citizen activists for uncovering the scope of Plainfield Municipal Utilities Authority spending on conferences and business lunches.

With most public entities admitting they can no longer afford even what was possible two or three years ago for travel, conferences and restaurant tabs, the seeming excesses of the PMUA are all the more egregious. In the case of the PMUA, expenses are passed on to the ratepayers. Citing layoffs on one hand and authorizing pricey outings on the other? Almost sounds like the Jersey salute one gets on the highway.

Municipalities and authorities were never meant to have Cadillac tastes, although my last assignment before retiring from the Courier News was on Plainfield cell phone use that turned out to be quite extravagant by some elected officials. Now folks are forced to be in the Yugo, Segway or shoeleather mode to get by.

The Open Public Records Act is proving to be a very good tool for holding officials accountable and making them face the economic realities of the times. Keep up the good work!

--Bernice Paglia


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bernice - would love to read your report on City cellphone use back then. Are there any links to it or can you post it??

9:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of those who went to Atlantic City, how many were the actual people who come to the house to pick up the garbage or use the sewer jet to clear a clog ??? None to zero is my quess. Lawyers, consultants and political buddies went, of which who complained ??? These are the Mayor's body guards without guns.

4:15 AM  
Blogger Bernice said...

The cell phone article ran in early August 2003. Your best bet would be to look it up at the Plainfield Public Library.

5:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone should look into the PMUA's cell phone records. Last months wireless bill was over $3500 as listed in the bills list.

7:45 PM  

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