BOCC travel policy simmers during meeting

Published: Thursday, March 28, 2013 at 09:27 AM.

Williams continued his probe until he was finally cut off by Commission chair Tan Smiley, who said being a politician meant you were fair game for attacks and that a tough skin was necessary for the job, while praising Bill Williams for his work as a commissioner.

The issue came up later in the meeting when Port St. Joe resident Bill Koran took the podium.

Koran said the issue was not so much the travel, which he acknowledged as a necessary part of the job.

But he said the county spent more than $200,000 in travel in 2011 and that commissioners should weigh the cost of travel, room nights, meals, etc. against the perception of citizens making, on average, $18,000 a year.

“This issue is very important,” Koran said. “A lot of the travel is justified. But it should it cost more than the school board pays for travel, what a state employee is paid for travel?

“People are looking for accountability and responsibility in government. When you travel make it worth it.”

Koran said he had yet to see a cost/benefit analysis that demonstrated certain trips with several county employees traveling – such as last week’s National Association of Counties meeting in Washington, D.C. – brought tangible benefit to the county.

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