Date: October 20, 2006
To: The Honorable Members of the Dallas City Council
DEAN INTERNATIONAL CONTRACT
These are the
changes I propose we make to the one-year Dean International contract we
approved on October 11, 2006.
We have until Wednesday, October 25,
2006, to reconsider our vote.
Only one of the
members who voted for Dean's sweet deal can move to reconsider the vote.
That would be Dollar Bill Blaydes, Ed Oakley, Sandra Dee Griffith, Ron Natinsky,
Steve Salazar, Elba Garcia or Pauline Medrano. Mayoral candidate Griffith
might be tempted because this is going to make him an easy target by the other
mayoral candidates. The problem for Sandra Dee is that he is not informed
enough to make a sensible statement about the Dean contract. He was also
on KRLD. He admitted voting for a contract that he had never read -- after
he said he knew what was in the contract. Sort of like, "I voted for it,
before I voted against it."
I am happy to forward you copies of
receipts that Dean has filed on his expense reports to the city that show why
there is a strong and immediate need to amend his contract in the following
1. Limit number of Dean employees per
trip (9 of his employees went on a trip to Laredo for a quarterly meeting of the
Dean-created group ROTCC);
This is like we
are subsidizing a rolling party. 9 employees on the same trip?
That's quite an entourage. ROTCC is another one of those shadow government
operations that Joe Taxpayer gets to fund, but has no clue what it's about, and
little or no power to stop decisions made by the likes of Dollar Bill.
2. Limit number of Dallas council
members per trip (5 council members went on
This would be Dollar Bill Blaydes, Ed Oakley, Ron Natinksy, et al.
3. Pay no expenses if Dallas
officials/employees not on trip (we reimbursed some travel expenses for a trip
to Washington D.C. with Irving City Council members, their spouses and children
and NO Dallas officials);
Dallas taxpayers are not only paying
for Dollar Bill, et al to party hearty, but we get to pay for free-loading
politicians from other cities.
4. Have a formula to reduce expenses and/or
fees when other paying members join TEX-21 and ROTCC and any other Dean-created
group we pay him to consult for (We are providing the seed money for him to
travel to other cities and countries to recruit members to his organizations
and, when successful, we should be reimbursed or compensated in some fashion);
Dallas taxpayers are paying for Dean
to create multiple-layers of shadow governments. Each new member to his
layered party cake pays him consulting fees in addition to what he is already
raking off from Dallas taxpayers.
5. Use city's reimbursement limits on
travel, meals and entertainment expenses;
6. Cap nightly hotel rate (i.e., no Four
Seasons Mexico City [$360/night before taxes] no Las Hadas beach resort in
Mexico - both Dean trips that we paid for);
Sounds pretty reasonable to me, but
then I don't think like Dollar Bill or his traveling buddies.
7. No internet surcharges in the room (use
the hotel biz center instead, or pay it personally, or get a blackberry);
many hotels no longer offer free internet service even in their business
8. NO Xerox copies made in
hotels (Dean charged $82 for copies at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington D.C.);
9. Strict monthly dollar limit on
copying (we are spending up to $2000/month now, and there is no detail given for
any of it. There is no reason for this much copying to be done by a professional
lobbyist working one project for us, unless we are doing all the copying for all
of his clients);
The firm where I
work does not spend $2000 a month on copying. With scanning and e-mail and
fax, there is just no need to do that kind of copying. We are paying for
Dean to furnish copies to his other municipal clients.
10. No City of Dallas Council
members or employees, or Dean employees, may use personal airline
Advantage accounts to accrue miles from taxpayer-paid trips for personal use
(all three groups do
now). Instead, create
city-owned accounts and use city-earned mileage for official city travel to
reduce city travel costs;
You should have
heard Dollar Bill's response when she brought up this particular little perk of
his. He said there's nothing wrong with him or other council members
racking up advantage miles on taxpayers' dime. Mayor Miller told him it
was illegal. If it's not, it sure ought to be.
11. No councilmember/city employee
guests allowed on Dean?s expense report, which is specifically (and strangely)
this mean we are paying for spouses and significant others to travel with
council members or city employees? These are supposed to be business
12. "Allowable" expenses reimbursed not
"Actual" expenses, as written now;
13. Quarterly meetings of Dean-created
organizations, for which Dallas is the primary source of funds (TEX-21 and ROTCC
and any others) should be held in Dallas (i.e., Laredo ROTCC meeting cost Dallas
thousands of dollars with 9 Dean employees and five council
members flying or driving to Laredo, eating meals, and spending the night
unless a host city outside Dallas is willing to pay Dean his expenses);
With video conferencing, there is no
need for all the traveling anyway. Mayor Miller is right that we should be
having meetings in Dallas when Dallas taxpayers are primarily footing the bill.
14. We should consider giving him only a
monthly fee and he pays for all expenses out of that. It will discourage him
from booking at 5-star hotels, will keep his organizational meetings in Dallas,
will discourage him from doing Xerox copying in hotels at $1 plus/page, and will
stop the habit of putting movies and liquor, the internet and the mini-bar, on
the hotel tab;
15. We need better record-keeping if we
do keep giving him an expense account:
a) Dean regularly submits
receipt for meals that do not itemize the charges, making it impossible to tell
if there is liquor on the bill (which we assume do include alcohol since a
number of dinner tabs that re itemized include beer and Jack Daniels)
b) Dean does not request
reimbursement for some of the largest, most expensive meals that are on his
travel itineraries. Who is paying for these meals (like dinner for 8, formal
attire requested, at a Washington DC restaurant earlier this year)?
c) If it is Dean, why don't
the meals show up in council members' annual financial
disclosure statements (which specifically call for meals and travel to be
disclosed if they are paid for by professional lobbyists or trade groups)?
members are not paying for these group meals/entertainment because they
don't show up in their campaign reports as an officeholder expense and their
daily travel per diems would nor cover it.
We clearly have a reporting problem that we do not want to be a problem for
councilmembers, or city employees, and our reporting system needs to be more
I look forward to getting feedback from
you on these important items.