By: Diane Benjamin
I filed a FOIA request because of the huge entries last month for travel and meetings:
“Receipts for the $8775.00 to APTA for travel and meetings on the September 2022 disbursements
Receipts for the $677.70 paid to Dave White for travel and meetings on the same list
Receipts for the $3866.53 charged to VISA for travel and meetings on the same list”
Connect Transit employees and Board members previously traveled a lot. COVID locked them up, now they are making up for lost adventures.
The American Public Transportation Association held an annual meeting in Seattle WA October 9-12
Connect Transit paid for:
NINE people at $975 each.
Board members Ryan Whitehouse and Judy Buchanan went as well as General Manager David Braun. The rest must be employees.
Why did 9 people attend? A few couldn’t attend a report back? Spending other people’s money is obviously not a problem. It’s only $8,775 when the people they serve are lucky to make it to the next paycheck.
Another employee flew to Charlottesville VA – just the flight was $742.20.
Yet another flew to El Paso TX – $528.60. 5 nights at a hotel cost $575.75 + another night for $115.15 more.
There was a drive to Milwaukee labeled “look at buses”.
Food was purchased in Grand Rapids Michigan. I didn’t see travel expenses.
Treats were purchased twice from 2 local bakeries.
Of course more receipts for food are included as well as ground transportation.
A lot of money was also spent with Good Hire and Indeed trying to find employees.
See 72 pages of receipts here:
There was also 5 nights in St Louis, transportation via Amtrak. Hotel was 616.70.
If you see dead electric buses be sure to get a pic and send it to me!