COUNCIL SCROOGES

BUCKS Good news. According to the City Council’s expense account reports for official city business, we’ve elected some frugal folk, with few coming anywhere near their annual budget limits (mayor: $11,000; mayor pro tern, deputy mayor, and at-large members: $7,000; remaining members, $5,000).

At-large councilmember jim buErGer wins the Uncle Scrooge Award for fewest dollars spent-none. “I don’t want to spend tax dollars like this,” says Buerger, a millionaire who has always reimbursed the city for his expenditures.

On the other hand, a look at Mayor Annette Strauss’S numbers shows that being mayor can require a few extras like wallet-size photos ($48.34); a mobile phone ($1040,10); and a New York hotel stay when she went to accept a “Mother of the Year” award ($235). Still, Strauss was well under her budget at $2,490.37.

Using the latest tallies available (through August), LORI PALMER is the only over-budget offender. The bulk of Palmer’s overage ($2,859.27) comes in the category of postage and mailing, which she says is necessary to keep her “diverse” district well informed. Instead of holding just one general Town Hall meeting a month, Palmer says, she holds an additional three neighborhood meetings per month. She also notified constituents of “major redistricting meetings,” a special budget meeting, and confabs on “code enforcement, crime prevention, and Love Field.”

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