Friday, January 30, 2009

Two Milwaukee County Supervisors To Pay Back $4,000

Supervisors used taxpayer dollars to attend Presidential inaugural event

By H. Nelson Goodson
El Conquistador Newspaper
3206 W. National Ave.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53215 U.S.A.
January 30, 2009

Milwaukee- Last Monday, County Supervisors Toni Clark from District 2, and Elizabeth Coggs from District 10 have confirmed that they will now reimburse Milwaukee County at least $4,000 of taxpayer dollars used to pay for their trip to Washington D.C. The supervisors apologized in a written statement about taking the money and spending a few days in Washington D.C. to attend President Barack Obama Inauguration two weeks ago. “After several discussions with constituents of the districts we serve, our colleagues, as well as other local, state and national elected officials, We’ve decided to reimburse all dollars approved and allocated to us by the office of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors for expenses incurred during our recent trip to Washington DC”, wrote Supervisors Clark and Coggs in a joint statement. “We just think it’s the right thing to do.”
The supervisors claimed the trip was to meet with members of Milwaukee’s congressional delegation and non-profit and philanthropic organizations and talk about funding new programs in Milwaukee County. They said the trip was to get "face-to-face time" with other politicians and to find ways to reduce the county's tax base by bringing new programs to Milwaukee.
After numerous Milwaukee County residents learned about the expenditures for the trip with taxpayers monies and complained to other supervisors, both Clark and Coggs decided to reimburse the county. Although, County Board Chairman Lee Holloway has blamed Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker for the leak. Holloway in a letter sent to Walker wrote, "What a maneuver! You know that you were the one behind the scenes pulling the strings that led to the news articles." Instead of Holloway reprimanding both Clark and Coggs for using taxpayers dollars for the trip, he is actually defending their decision by saying it was a legitimate government business. But, Supervisor Mark Borkowski disagreed with Holloway and said Coggs and Clark were wrong for taking the money. Even Coggs and Clark have admitted, that it was wrong to have taken taxpayer dollars and have said they will pay it back. Holloway still believes Walker was trying to divert attention from him for refusing to take federal stimulus monies. Walker would not comment about Holloway’s letter.

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