Off the Record

Greta: A $90K lesson in how the government wasted YOUR money - and why you should care

'Off the Record', 11/5/13: Follow the money recently paid to a Chicago consulting firm for work at an education conference and you will be outraged

 

By Greta Van Susteren

Let's go "Off the Record" for a minute. This should bother you ... hear me out. The D.C. government recently paid a Chicago consultant firm $89,995 for one day at most -- one day of working an education conference. That's a lot for one day. Why should you care? You don't live here, right?

Keeping listening. The $90,000 was spent on 30-minute keynote speech, three 45-minute parent workshops and books.

Are you ready for this? Many of the speakers, including the keynote speaker, all volunteered. So, none of the $90,000 went to any of them. Someone pocketed a big payday, but it gets worse. The D.C. agency who spent the $90,000 for this one day hired a non-D.C. firm without soliciting bids for the lowest price.

Now how did the non-D.C. firm get the cushy contract for one day? Well, one of the D.C. agency's top officials knew the founder of the Chicago firm. It sounds a bit fishy, doesn't it?

Now, you might be sitting there thinking, Tough luck, Greta, that's your local tax money, not mine because I don't live in D.C.. Well, not so fast. The District of Columbia receives about $4.1 billion from you federal taxpayers each year. It's true. That your $4.1 billion that did not go directly to this one day conference, but it probably is the reason D.C. thought they had enough money to squander $90,000 for one day. They are feeling pretty rich, courtesy of your big fat paycheck each year.

Now you get it? Why you should care?

That's my "Off the Record" comment tonight. If you have an important story or issue you think I should take "Off the Record," go to GretaWire.com and tell us about it.