TAG | Isiah Leggett
The Washington Post astutely notes:
Yet if the recession-era budget Leggett proposed Monday is approved, total government spending will have gone up by $423 million, or 11 percent, on his watch.
The County’s Investigator General released a report uncovering $600,000 in no-bid contracts for police “training”:
Montgomery County awarded more than $600,000 in no-bid payments to nine companies that had ties to county police officers and were part of a controversial tuition-assistance program, Montgomery’s inspector general said in a report released Monday….Inspector General Thomas J. Dagley concluded that the close ties among the companies, employees and students enrolled in the classes have ‘and will continue to expose county taxpayer dollars to waste and abuse until more comprehensive guidelines and monitoring are put in place.’
The county improperly subsidized the purchase of private firearms:
The weapons classes were set up by a firm with ties to a Montgomery police officer. Fellow officers enrolled in the classes, and their tuition was paid by the county’s tuition assistance program. A suit filed by the county Wednesday accused the firm and officer who helped run it of fraud. Officials allege that the classes were designed with a special enticement to get officers to enroll: County-subsidized guns they could take home for personal use. The tuition program is not supposed to cover books or other materials, including guns.
The Gazette reports on the contract fracas between the county and the MCGEO employee union:
Gino Renne, president of The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1994/Municipal and County Government Employees Organization [said] ‘But the county will have to get off their high horse and take a leap of faith with their work force,’
Doug Prouty, president of the Montgomery County Education Association, which represents teachers [said] the teachers’ union is aware of the county’s financial difficulties, but would not rule out seeking pay raises…
‘We do not have resources to pay for additional employee compensation this year,’ [Nancy] Floreen [Montgomery County Council President (D-At large) of Garrett Park] said. ‘I do believe everybody understands that.’
County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) also has said it would be difficult to give pay raises to employees…
Councilman Philip M. Andrews (D-Dist. 3) of Gaithersburg … criticized by Renne last year — when Andrews served as council president — for saying the county could not afford cost-of-living or step pay increases for employees…said Monday that pay raises remain unaffordable.”