Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson has a shiny new ride. The Sacramento Mayor had the Sacramento Police Department buy him a new SUV that cost $51,250 according to an invoice reported by News KCRA 3. It has raised an important question about whether a purchase of this nature is justified, or if this is a waste of city funds. The report states that Sacramento was going to be using the money that was spent on the mayor’s new SUV to replace two other police vehicles. Those vehicles were a Ford Expedition and a forklift that is used at the police department’s property division. Hopefully they didn’t really need that new forklift, because it sounds like there won’t be any money left for it.
Johnson has justified his purchase by stating that no additional taxpayer money was used in the purchase of this new SUV, and that it is an effort to help make the city more green in the near future. Oh did we mention that the new SUV comes with a satellite television dish on the roof and a very nice onboard television system? The mayor’s office also made sure to point out that no taxpayer money was used to add that television system. It seems that a once in-touch mayor has started to move away from what got him elected to decisions that might end up costing him the office. As the mayor of the capital of California, there is understandably going to be more attention on Johnson, and it is clear that he still hasn’t figure out how to master the game of public relations.
KCRA has been hosting a poll on their website, where they ask users to weigh in on what they think about the Sacramento Mayor’s new city vehicle. With three options to choose from, 64% of voters stated that “The mayor should buy his own car”, 29% voted for “It’s a waste of taxpayer money”, and only 7% of voters though that it was an appropriate purchase. When 93% of the voters in this poll are stating that the purchase should not have been made, this could become the single point that loses Johnson any future political offices. While the poll is admittedly very unscientific, it certainly shows the disdain that the people of Sacramento and surrounding areas are feeling about the city buying a fancy new SUV for their mayor. Did Mayor Johnson really think that he could put a positive spin on a purchase like this? Or did he just stop caring?