Mrs. Lord Goes to Washington

Read it and weep, city of GY employees.

Georgia’s week of Jan 17 expense report to the city of GY. Geogia Expenses0001

Mayor Lord of Goodyear attended the “winter meeting” of the US Conference of Mayors January 18 – 20 in Washington DC. The host site was the Capitol Hilton Hotel. Just the registration for this event was $600 of your tax money. The Capitol Hilton Hotel has room rates starting at $299 per night and it costs $42 per night just to park your car there. **

But don’t worry, there must have been a special ‘conference’ rate. Georgia spent only $278 of your tax dollars each of the three nights she stayed there and she didn’t park a car so it only cost you about $1000 for Georgia to stay there three nights. And in a king size bed, too. Queen probably would have been more appropriate for Georgia, don’t you think?

Then there was G’s nearly $1000 round trip airfare to DC. No cheap, no seat assignment, Southwest Airlines low budget ride for our mayor. Right now, you can fly round trip nonstop to BWI airport (just outside DC) from Phoenix on Southwest for only $341. Round trip! Nonstop! Nearly 70% less than what Georgia spent.

And I’ll bet there was plenty to eat at the conference all day, but it appears Georgia gets up to a $71 per day Per Diem which she charged to you to the tune of $158 additional dollars.

Add it all together and Georgia spent about $2500 of your tax money (over $800 per day) so she could hang out with a bunch of other US mayors and probably enjoy a great program of thoughtful experts on how to better run your city (ie. spend your city’s money). I happen to think that $2500 is a lot of money to spend on a three day trip but you may disagree. So forget about what I think is expensive, the real question still remains which is;

Why does the mayor of a 60,000 resident bankrupt Phoenix suburb need to go to the conference of mayors meeting in DC in the first place?

Let’s see if we can figure that out.

But before we do that, one more point. Do you think Georgia made most or even any of her own arrangements to go to this conference? Surely you jest! It looks from the expense report receipts above that someone named Cindy Mason made most or all of G’s travel arrangements for our mayor. Cindy appears to have even signed G up for the conference. Well after all, you can’t expect a mayor to make her own arrangements can you?

Now back to why G had to go to this important meeting;

  1. There were 244 mayors registered for the meeting. .
  2. There are only 275 cities in the US with a population of over 100,000 so not even all the mayors of the 275 most populous cities in America attended. GY has only 65,000 residents.
  3. Since GY has only 65,000 residents (according to the 2010 US Census), there are 535 cities in the US with populations greater than GY. All those mayors didn’t attend.

So since only 244 mayors were registered for this meeting that means that nearly 300 mayors of US cities larger than GY did not find it necessary to spend tax payer money to attend this meeting. I didn’t bother to check how many of those 300 cities are bankrupt like Goodyear but I don’t think there are that many (yet).

Bankrupt or not, $300 million of GY debt or not, a defunct mall or not, our mayor went anyway.

But wait just a minute now. Let’s give Georgia the benefit of the doubt. There might have been some really interesting stuff going on at this meeting that Georgia needed to participate in. Perhaps there were some really interesting speakers, or awards, or organizations that our mayor could hob nob, aka ‘network’ with, that made this trip so important to her and the city of GY.

What follows is a small sample of all the important who’s whos that Georgia had a chance to learn from while she was at this meeting.

You didn’t think I wouldn’t tell you now, did you?

  1. Speaking about the “New American City” at Lord Mayor’s conference were;
    RICHARD CORDRAY, Director, Consumer Financial Protection. This is the guy Obama just illegally appointed to a bureau that was created by Dodd-Frank and that a majority of Congress thinks should be abolished.
    JAMES DIFFLEY, Vice President at IHS Global Insight. IHS provides whatever economic data your city wants to use to support your world vision to help you convince tax payers to spend more of their tax money.
  2. And at a panel about Jumpstarting Local Real Estate Markets?
    DAVID H. STEVENS, President and CEO, Mortgage Bankers Association. You know who they are, especially since the latest real estate bubble.
    HOLLY MOSKERINTZ, Manager, Employer Assisted Housing, National Association of Realtors. This is a lobbying group. At least Georgia is consistent, she took campaign money from the AZ Home Builders Association as well as the AZ Association of Realtors. But wait, it gets even better.
  3. RECOGNIZED by the Community Development and Housing Committee was;
    And who spoke there?
  4. And perhaps Lord Mayor went to hear, “The Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness” hosted in part by;
    ERIC WILL, Senior REO*** Sales Director, Freddie Mac/HomeSteps. Well, they really know how to pick their hosts at the Mayors’ Conference, don’t they?
  5. Besides these folks, other featured speakers were;
    Arne Duncan, the head of the US Dept of Education and Obama Chicago hack,
    JULIUS GENACHOWSKI, Chairman, Federal Communications Commission. This is the guy who wants to regulate the internet and re-instate the “fairness doctrine” so liberals get as much air time as conservatives.
  6. And the piece de resistance, speaking at the American Beverage Association sponsored “Child Obesity” awards (do you think they served soft drinks?) were none other than;
    Arriana Huffington of the far left Huffington Post, and are you ready????


Your tax money well spent.

I’ll bet our mayor got lots of good tips from all of these public trough folks. And in addition to all of the featured speakers, our mayor got a chance to hob nob with mayors from around the country from Michael Bloomberg to Rahm Emmanuel who both spoke to the attendees along with David Plouffe, Obama’s chief political adviser.

Unfortunately, our mayor was not on the agenda this year. Maybe next year? I’ll bet she’s working on it. I’ll bet she’s already got a plan to mine all of those great contacts she made at the conference. Why by next year perhaps she’ll have wormed her way onto a few Conference of Mayors committees and then she’ll have more reasons to spend our money attending committee meetings while she continues to “network”, “make contacts”, and “build relationships” with all the other professional politicians that she appears to enjoy being around.

** Oh well, taxpayers are paying GY commuters over $30 per day per commuter to park their cars at the new GY park and ride.

*** REO stands for Real Estate Owned, or, bank foreclosed property.


9 Responses

  1. Another great article. I don’t know how widespread your blog is read, but have you or would you be willing to air your viewpoints and conclusions directly in front of the City Council? Putting them on the spot would “force” the media to report the substance albeit slanted. I’m sure it would be well attend by PC. Unfortunately the 30-50 year old crowd are busy working and raising families to notice the incrementalism being imposed on them by politicians at all level. Perhaps you could lead the GY Tea Party? There are a lot of us retirees who feel guilty for not paying attention when we were younger and want to find a productive way to reverse the trend.

    • Thanks for your comment. Please send my blog link to all your Goodyear resident voting friends. They can sign up there to get my emails every time I post something.
      Speaking at council meetings with this bunch is a waste of time. The media won’t report it, council won’t answer any questions, and since G took over they simply wait until your 3 minutes are up and then berate citizens once they sit down and are no longer permitted to defend themselves because their three minutes are up. With what happened to Roger Matlin, who wants to risk talking back to them and risk having G send the cops to you house to arrest you for disorderly conduct at a council meeting… Just like Roger.
      A woman named McFillin has spoken at council with documents about Fischbach knowing about the Pwndleton case issues from nearly day one and the news papers have not even mentioned it.
      The only way to fix this is to get the PC folks to realize that they need to vote these political hacks on GY city council out of office and that has to start with the Dem and Republican clubs in PC because they are the people who vote and who also “get out the vote”.
      The more people (besides me) speak up, the better. I encourage you to go to the next council meeting with 5 friends and each sign up for 3 minutes and each one of you ask G to explain herself spending this kind of money.
      She won’t answer. The only answers she will give will be deflections, finger pointing, and vague references to all the good info, contacts, relationships and ideas she got while she was there. In fact, her trip was all about self aggrandizement but she’ll never admit that.
      Try it, see what happens.

      • Unfortunately, the Republican Club in PC is controlled by “democrat lites” Ken Going and Bobbie Watts who are HUGE supporters of Georgia and to a lesser extent Wally. They attempt to destroy any hard working conservative who dares oppose them. Long time members will recall the vengeful, hateful campaign they instigated and continue to this day against Joan Schield the founder of the PebbleCreek Republican Club. I thought Joan was a FANTASTIC president and leader and this sorry bunch bad mouthed her every chance they got. Note to Sue: Keep your head down. If you don’t do what Ken or Bobbie wants you to do they will blatantly start a whisper campaign about you too and you will soon find yourself on the receiving end of their venegeful posts on AZcentral.

  2. You’ve got a academic writing style which I don’t frequently run into. Just thought I’d inform you 😀

  3. Strange how I haven’t run across this post until now. Either way, thanks a lot for it!

  4. Howard,
    Yesterday I wanted to purchase several chairs at World Market in Goodyear. As luck would have it they only had one in stock so I had to drive to Phoenix and Scottsdale to purchase the other chairs. I thought you would find it interesting that the World Market in our fair city of Goodyear charged me the most of all three cities for the same exact chair. You gotta love our GY tax rates……

    Goodyear Store: $219.60
    Happy Valley Store (Phoenix) $218.60
    Scottsdale Store: $217.89

    Amazing that Goodyear was more expensive than either Scottsdale or Phoenix. Just curious if the Scottsdale or the Phoenix Mayor attended this conference?

  5. Junket — a taxpayer funded trip taken by politicians which serves no purpose other than personal entertainment and/or advancement.

    Georgia has three priorities as Goodyear mayor: (1) feeding her ego, (2) stroking her ego, and (3) polishing her ego. A D.C. junket satisfied all three.

    In the grand scheme of things, $2,500 isn’t that big a deal, but it isn’t about the money as much as it is about appearances. Of course, appearances only matter if there are consequences. Georgia took the trip because she could, knowing there were no down side consequences to her actions. Exposed in Howard’s blog? Big deal. We’re talking about a politician with an $18,000 reelection war chest and the proven ability to raise as much additional money as necessary to win again in 2013. Why would she care about a little sniping from “the peanut gallery,” a phrase she used at a council meeting to describe those citizens in attendance.

    Consequences or not, keep fighting the good fight Howard.

  6. What country do I live in? It isn’t the USA! Two years ago, I spoke of Goodyear’s corruption. You didn’t listen. Maybe the contamination plume under Pebblecreek is affecting your brains.

    • While a number of people in PebbleCreek and Goodyear know corruption is happening in our fair city NO ONE wants to do anything about it! Where are the masses of concerned citizens? Lots of bitching… just not to much pitching in to help make a difference. Keep voting in the same! When good people run for office where were the votes to make a difference by voting them into office? Howard is the biggest breath of fresh air in our city. Reports the truth about the corruption! But it is up to the rest of us to attend City Council meetings ask questions and voice your opinions. Under the freedom of information act you can request all documents and information. Hold their toes to the fire!! If 4,5, or 6 people attend your treated one way, but there is strength in numbers! Gather a crowd and show up!! They will have to deal with you rather than ridicule you and brush you off! Stopping the corruption and making a difference isn’t up to just a few, but up to all of us! The Lord Mayor & City Manager group is corruption at every level…. Remember as corrupt as our President is he still has his followers… so does the Lord dog and pony show! Until the concerned citizens are willing to stand up, speak up and work to make a difference………… it will stay as it is today! Corrupt!!! It is up to you, you, you and me to make a difference. Good people that have been in the trenches wear out..
      Apathy stinks! Our country is full of it! Thank you Howard for all the time, expense and giving up of your personal time to help Goodyear be a great city again! Working together for a better tomorrow!

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