I am no expert in reading a city’s expense report, and to be truthful, there were plenty of expenses I did not understand, they were not detailed enough for the average viewer to determine if it was a necessary expense or not, but some items on the report were very clear. While Royal Oak’s city employees will have to take 13 furlough days and receive less holiday pay, the city dished out $874.98 for a judges conference; I guess coffee and doughnuts are not good enough for a judge. Maybe we shouldn’t complain about the $243.64 check written to Gordon Food Service for corn roast supplies, but what about the $3,308.10 check to Bianco Travel & Tours Inc. for a day trip?
While Royal Oaks city employees will not be getting a raise this year, Hon Hoong Wang submitted a claim for $3,336.00 for a Tai Chi instructor, which makes the $264.60 and the $37.50 submitted for yoga instructors seem like chump change. Is it right to have city employees take concessions then pay $22,107.34 for a topographical survey, now? Really? I also wonder about the $1,055.22 issued for Christopher Jahnke’s travel expense – I hope it was important and worth the cuts employees had to make.
On September 7, 2010, more than $1,055,022 was paid in city expenses. I just have to wonder if all these expenses are a valid way to help the city of Royal Oak balance the budget or if the city officials had to make any concessions. Why does it seem like the people who make the least amount of money are always the ones who have to make the greatest sacrifices?