The Pork Continues To Roll
To the victor go the spoils, continues to be practiced by NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn and her predecessors for decades.
On Friday, January 21, she issued checks for 50 percent of each Councilmember’s annual awarded lulus of between $4,000 to $28,000 per year on top of a $112,000 base salary to her loyal members for chairing a Council Committee or subcommittee. The base salary plus lulu is three times what average constituents earn for a job officially classified as part time. Hardworking municipal civil servant employees and most ordinary New Yorkers would never see such treats from their employers.
Perhaps Quinn will host a ceremony when issuing the remaining 50 percent balance of lulus in July 2012 to coincide with completion of the renovated City Council chambers. Construction began in 2007 with an original cost estimate below $50 million and completion date of 2009.
In 2008, the first of a series of cost overruns raised the price tag to $65 million.
The bills for both a final price tag of $123.8 million and completion date of July 2012 along with all the lulus are paid by your hard earned tax dollars.
Councilmembers have staff to also drive them around town and private parking privileges at City Hall. I wonder how many ever considered using mass transit for commuting to work like millions of their constituents do on a daily basis?
Do any Council members have a Metro Card and use it on a regular basis? Check out the City Hall parking lot when the Council is in session and see for yourself.
Quinn continues the tradition of allocating millions of dollars in member item pork barrel projects to her Council favorites.
With 9 percent of 8,000,000 New Yorkers still out of work, there are many public minded citizens besides the current 51 Council members with the knowledge and wisdom to perform their jobs at a fraction of the cost. Many would gladly serve and show up for work full time without all the perks of office for $112,000 per year minus all the traditional insiders lulus or other benefits ordinary citizens can only dream about.