2009 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2009 16:19:05 -0800 (PST)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] MUNITIONS: Camp Bonneville (WA) contract - editorial
Not With Our Money
Sloppy contract on Camp Bonneville cleanup has led to extravagant use of tax dollars

The Columbian (WA)
February 13, 2009

As long as a private contractor fulfills all requirements of a public (taxpayer funded) contract, should the public tell the contractor how to spend that money?

It's a complex question created by what is known as a "fixed-price contract." Simplified, it works like this: Mary pays Bob $20 to mow her yard. Bob mows the yard, then spends $15 of the money (that used to be Mary's) on booze. Mary feels ripped off. She should. Still, her yard got mowed. Mary thinks she should have negotiated a better contract. She's right.

On a much larger scale, Mary's yard is Camp Bonneville, a 3,840-acre former artillery range in east Clark County. The U.S. Army awarded Clark County $26.8 million to remove old artillery shells so the site can be turned into a park. The state Department of Ecology also is involved in the project. But contractor Mike Gage has been spending some of the money extravagantly. As Michael Andersen reported in Wednesday's Columbian, Gage spent at least $7,422 on 38 meals between May 2006 and September 2008. He's also charging an hourly rate of $125 for himself, plus $42 an hour for his administrative assistant, his wife.


For the entire editorial, see


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
a project of the Pacific Studies Center
278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/961-8918

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