I complain about the stadium deal an awful lot. I mean, $611,000,000 of public money is an unprecedented amount of moolah to spend on a baseball stadium. And who knows if it will revitalize the Anacostia waterfront. But maybe I should give it a break. I mean, it's an unacceptable amount of money, but at least we're getting something tangible in return.
The same can't be said for the estimated $44,000,000 we lost through fraud. That money went to Bentleys and Louis Vuitton handbags. And the same can be said for the estimated $17,000,000 we lost through managerial incompetence. That's how much money the D.C. Inspector General thinks we lost when the D.C. Office of Contracting and Procurement started offering no-bid contracts to the company that processes our traffic tickets.
We've been using this company, ACS State and Local Solutions, for 23 years. So, I guess out of loyalty?, they named their price and we gave it to them. No questions asked.
Worse yet, the contracts were granted without the consent of the DC Council. This is a no-no. The DC Council has to approve city contracts over one millions dollars. So, beyond being merely wasteful, this also fails the smell test.
[Chief Procurement Officer David P.] Gragan was appointed by Mayor Adrian M. Fenty in June. The principal contracting officer involved with the sole-source contract awarded to ACS is no longer employed by the District, Gragan said.
Hmmm. Since everyone involved in the tax fraud fiasco is going up the river, can we expect the same for our unnamed contracting officer? If he (or she) wasted $17,000,000 out of incompetence, shouldn't he be incarcerated for that? There is no way anyone can convince me that these contracts were awarded in good faith. At best it was incompetence. At worst, malfeasance. Both possibilities should end up with the cotnracting officer having to answer to a criminal court.
Regardless, I am sick of hearing about the ways this city can, for all intents and purposes, set money on fire.