Lavish "business" trips on taxpayer dime

October 29, 2010

As we noted Wednesday, the outrageous waste, fraud and abuse by city officials in Bell, California, thrust the city into the national spotlight.

But Bell is far from the only place in America where government officials are acting irresponsibly. According to the Los Angeles Times, four city officials from Irwindale, CA, are accused of using city taxpayer dollars to fund lavish entertainment on “business” trips to New York.

The following LA Times excerpt details the accusations:

The four are accused of traveling to New York for up to six days at a time, allegedly to get a higher bond rating for the city, then improperly treating themselves to entertainment such as Yankee and Mets games and shows including “Phantom of the Opera” and “Mamma Mia!”

The total cost of five trips to New York between 2001 and 2005 was $205,678, according to documents obtained by The Times. More than $75,000 went for trips to discuss housing bonds and, according to one city official, was paid from the affordable housing fund.

While more news of government waste is far from a good thing, at least these people  — who are intentionally abusing the trust and money of the very people they are there to serve — are finally getting held to account. Now that’s a trend we can get behind.

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