Thursday, September 2, 2010
Food is all the rage at Boston City Hall these days, along with speculation over Mayor Thomas M. Menino's future.
Here's a bit of a piece I did for the Boston Herald this week, showing that the city has blown more than $130,000 this year alone on catered meals for city workers, despite massive cutbacks and layoffs.
City workers feasting with taxpayer dough
By Dave Wedge
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Taxpayer-funded raviolis, pizza and gourmet sandwich platters are being gobbled up by “belt-tightening” City Hall and school workers as they chow down on catered meals from no-bid contractors including donors to Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s campaign coffers.
The $130,000-plus in free lunches this year alone hit the table as the cash-strapped city was laying off teachers, custodians, library workers and others to close a budget gap.
Records reviewed by the Herald show taxpayers picked up the check for:
A $2,600 lunch at the swish Ames Hotel in January for Mayor Thomas M. Menino to welcome new city councilors;
$6,100 for a pair of breakfasts for teachers in the Department of English Language;
A $5,000 “professional development” teachers seminar at Lombardo’s in Randolph, which included a “corporate express coffee break” and a “chef’s display” of turkey and tuna sandwiches;
$1,225 in meals for cops at strategy meetings for the Boston Celtics playoff run; and
Regular catered meetings at up to $200 each for School Superintendent Carol Johnson and her principals.
Read the rest here . . .
And in today's follow-up, the janitor's union, which has been hit hard by layoffs, says the food tab is "insane" . . .