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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Junk junkets

The O's at it again with their regular series, "Who Had the Pickle?" This is where they go through bureaucrats' and politicians' expense accounts looking for expenditures to question. Sometimes they find good stuff. This weekend it's state officials' travel expenses, which -- breaking news -- are not declining despite the tough economic times. One guy from the lottery commission went to farookin' Gibraltar.

Unfortunately, the O mars its findings with needlessly inflammatory language. Remember the Port of Portland coffee "laced with" Bailey's? This time around, in the first paragraph of the story, the Coeur d'Alene resort is tagged as "swanky." Oh, those adjectives -- all the reporters over there want to be columnists. And if they think people are going to get worked up because some bureaucrat stayed at the Inn at Spanish Head or Kah-Nee-Ta instead of a Motel 6, they're misreading the public.

But surely the article makes a good point -- government employees spend way too much time on travel that produces little. A lot of these trips needn't be taken at all, at any level of accommodations.

Comments (12)

Public sector junkets are a lot like your Greek hotel story a few days.

Junkets are places where nutty ideas are recycled and promulgated, so that politicians can come back and say, "It's not so nutty, everyone is doing it!"

So let's get to it and look at all the trips Sam Adams and his staff take.

Especially the ones where Sam vanishes for a stretch. There'd be a lot more abuses there.

Hey. It's called "notwerking". You have to tend your notwerk.

You know the party that has failed to control the executive branch since 1986 really can't be called the opposition party because its legislative delegation is too go-along-to-get-along to bring this stuff up in hearings. I am not claiming Republicans would be any better as evidenced by their inability to bring up these kinds of issues but a little opposition lip service might help this state.

Eric Morris,
Interesting comment about the Republicans, as I just finished writing about that very topic, as there are critical issues here that seem to have silence across the political spectrum, either that or the media reports what whomever is in power wants them to report.

After the current Clackamas County Sheriff (D) was elected he and his undersheriff found the Sheriff's office had an large travel budget for continuing education etc.

They figured out much of it was unnecessary and took control of all travel approval to develop some cost saving reforms.

One major improvement was they discovered that instead of paying to send a few deputies to a distant conference, they could bring in the key presenter or presenters to give the same information to many more deupties and save a lot of money.

The Sheriff also created (as a detective 11 years ago) and sponsors a top notch annual Child Abuse and Family Violence Summit


drawing attendees from across and outside the country.

It's such a draw and so well managed the office makes a profit on the event.

This is what is possible when the stench of political agendas is not the driving motivator and what is possible on a much grander scale if people recogninze they can change things.

The cavalier attitude of the state and too many of its workers really stands out in the piece. More crazy it seems to me is the fact that webinars and other
hi-tech ways of meeting for training or whatever, are available but these folks are living in the (junket) past. And yes the folks at The Oregonian need to do a similar piece on Bozo The Clo...I mean Mayor whatshisname.

I think the City's better off when Sam travels. Can somebody please put him on the slow and relaxed around-the-world cruise, soon?

The main problem is that Esteve didn't look very far. Attention should be paid to Metro, for example - where millions more are spent on international junkets. Focusing on a convention in Idaho is really small potatoes.

I love Idaho potatoes!

Did you watch the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl yesterday? It was hard to watch on that blue field over there.

Inn at Spanish Head aka Inn at Tijuana Toilet.

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