; Life is like champagne......: Government spending

Friday, July 16, 2010

Government spending

When it comes to spending money, the government seems to know how to spend it quicker and more of it than a shop-o-holic!  This goes for Federal, State, and local...they are no different!  I of course work at the local level and all of the cliches we laugh about and question when it comes to what government employees spend money on seem to be true!  I have an example.
Our government runs on a fiscal year.  We inform all of the departments a few weeks before the end of this year that any purchase orders left pertaining to that year must be in by a certain date and also let them know what is left in their budget.  What do you think happens next?  All of the sudden the financial department is swamped with purchase orders and everyone is trying to spend what they have left in their budget line items!  Heaven forbid we do not spend that money and use it for the next year or rainy day fund!  This is where the frivolous spending happens, all to justify keeping the budget they have set.
One department, not to be named, started off after receiving the purchase order cut off date to request payment of a pair of magnifying glasses(the kind you wear) to be used on off site work.  o.k., how did you do your job for the past 20 years without them!  Then a verbal request came up for a larger computer screen because theirs were smaller than everyone else!  This was not true as the person making the request measured the screen from top to bottom and everyone has the same size throughout the building!  They have been notorious for spending monies just to spend it.  I found an example of pens ordered that were $30 each because the employee "liked these pens", the explanation given!  I like lobster but you do not see me buying it to have for lunch every day!  This spending seems to have spilled into the new year.  The department head has lost their cell phone while mowing the lawn and wants a new phone.  the best part of this is that the phones do not come out of their department budget but out of the Main building budget!  This person has lost the phone twice already and has gone over the phone contract for replacement phones.  So when offered a phone that was the former Selectman's phone, the response was not pretty.  Evidently a new phone was expected and we were told that the replacement phone had bad reception.  Since when does phone reception involve the phone and not where the towers are located for service!  The list goes on and on.
I find myself going in to work, encountering at least one incident a day and it always amazes me when it happens.  Trying to stop these incidents is another story for another day.

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2 comments:

Mari said...

Sad but true. In our town the powers that be decided to use our "surplus" tax dollars to build decorative lamp posts. Hello? Do we really need to have new lamps posts with florid Corinthian decorations adorning the poles?

What about giving it back to the people?
Ugh.

katy said...

That is crazy! There is no accountability at any level of government. Hey, that's our tax money.