Monday, June 22, 2015

Abele's Expensive Security Issues

In 2013, as Chris Abele was crafting his 2014 Milwaukee County budget, he included giving himself $400,000 for a security detail, an amount five times the cost for Tom Ament, the last county executive to use a security force.  Abele said that he needed the security detail due to "increased threat activity."  He also said that he would take bids from local law enforcement and private agencies.  Apparently, Milwaukee County Sheriff Deputies weren't good enough to serve as his Imperial Guard.

Fortunately, the Milwaukee County Board put the reins to Abele's out of control spending spree and allotted him $100,000 instead.

Apparently, the alleged "threatening activity wasn't all that great since it took Abele nearly two years to act on getting his security force.  But when he finally did get his Imperial Guard, he made sure it was fit for a boy prince like him:
Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele likes to hobnob with political and corporate heavyweights.

Now Abele has the security to match.

Starting earlier this month, Abele hired two pricey private security guards from a California-based firm to provide protection for 50 hours of work a week. Included in the deal is the use of a GMC Yukon XL, a full-size SUV with a sticker price starting at $50,000.

Gavin de Becker & Associates — which has provided security for former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and actress Jennifer Lawrence — is being paid $73.75 an hour for each of the two guards.

Taxpayers will pick up the cost for the first $100,000 for Abele's security detail under the no-bid contract. That should cover three months.

Abele spokesman Nate Holtonsaid the millionaire county exec would then cover the rest of the annual tab, which should run to about $300,000 for the final nine months. Abele would also pay for the two guards to provide security during nonwork hours.

"The county, on his behalf, investigated all the options, and came up with this firm," Holton said. The contract, he added, was not large enough to require bidding.
Again, as it happens all too often with Abele, there was no transparent, open bidding process after all.   It would also be interesting to see who is picking up the tab for his Imperial SUV - not to mention the fuel and upkeep for it.  Somehow, I don't think it's Emperor Abele.

If this seems familiar, even with its excessiveness, it should.

Abele's BFF and ideological brother, Scott Walker, did the same thing.  As soon as Walker became governor, he got himself a high-priced SUV, at the taxpayers expense.  He also hired G4S, formerly known as Wackenhut, to serve as his Imperial Guard at the state capitol.

Every day, Abele and Walker are getting to be more and more alike.  It's getting so you can't tell the petty tyrants apart without a scorecard.

No comments:

Post a Comment