Hey Taxpayers---Just Write Us Another Czech ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Monday, October 5, 2009

Hey Taxpayers---Just Write Us Another Czech

I am awaiting official information about the costs for this trip, but for some reason, the hotel costs are not yet known. I wrote to Alderman Shropshire and the city employees jetting off to Czech out Europe asking how much their jaunt is costing we the taxpayers. (I wonder if Shropshire let his bondsman know he is flying off to Europe...) Here are some of the replies:

From Chief of Historic Preservation, Patricia Blick  to me:
I will be away from the office from Tuesday, October 6, 2009 to Monday, October 12,  2009.  I will return to the office on Tuesday, October 13, 2009.

If you need immediate assistance please contact Shari Pippen at slpippen@annapolis.gov or 410-263-7961 ext. 7793.

Thank you.
From chief of environmental programs Frank Biba to me
show details 4:29 PM (4 hours ago)
I will be out of the office Oct. 6 - Oct. 13, returning Oct. 14.
I am still trying to track down the total costs for this trip.....

Assuming we are paying for airfare and hotel for five, that is perhaps about $7500, but  meals are supposedly covered by the host. What about how they are presumably being paid--and accruing vacation time and benefits during this trip? That could add thousands more.  But let us turn our attention to what the heck this is all about. They are going because our city is a finalist-not a winner--but a finalist for an award. Four of them--and an alderman, all highly paid professionals (well not the alderman) two of whom are appointed by the outgoing mayor. I am sure this could be researched, but I am going to take a wild guess that in addition to Malinoff who is paid over $120k per year, Biba probably approaches $100k and the others are probably mid-to upper professionals making, oh, maybe in the 60's or 70's, so you can see how a work week for each of them adds up--but this is not exact, just rough "guesstimates". It all sounds like a payoff to them as Boss Ellen leaves office and another feather in her own legacy cap.

But let us explore this award and the junket members:

Michael Mallinoff, Director of the Department of Neighborhood and Environmental Programs
Frank Biba, Chief of Environmental Programs
Patricia Blick, Chief of Historic Preservation
Karen Engelke, Special Projects Coordinator
Sam Shropshire, Ward 7 Alderman

And of LivCom? 
ANNAPOLIS, USA is being judged along with these other similar sized cities:
CANADA BAY, Australia
CHRUDIM, Czech Republic
EGER, Hungary
JIHLAVA, Czech Republic
MLADA BOLESLAV, Czech Republic
TABOR, Czech Republic 

I wrote to Roanoke (a finalist in a larger sized category) and St. Cloud to see what kind of a delegation they are sending and how much they are spending. That information is forthcoming...and more as I learn more. But I'd like to know how many cities frm the US and elsewhere applied.

LISTEN TO CP Publisher Paul Foer on 1430WNAV at 8:15 every weekday morning.

Join us every Thursday morning, from 8-9 am for our Sip N' Blogs normally at ZU Coffee, 934 Bay Ridge Road, Annapolis, Maryland, in the Giant Shopping Center. Special guests will be:
Oct 8--Mat Silverman, Ward 5
Oct. 15--Josh Cohen
Oct 22--Chris Fox (at Sly Fox Pub)
Oct 29--Dave Cordle
Stop by on your way to work for your morning latte and meet other local activists. Zu now has a drive-through window!


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