Even as members of Pennsylvania's 253-member General Assembly whined and kvetched last year about the pain of the 2015 budget impasse and castigated Gov. Tom Wolf for runaway spending, they were still billing taxpayers for millions of dollars in food and lodging expenses. As our pal Dennis Owens of ABC-27 reports, the 203-member state House billed taxpayers $2.15 million in per-diem payments last year. The 50-member Senate collected a comparably modest $247,829, the station reported, citing documents obtained through a Right-to-Know Law request. To refresh your memory, lawmakers who live more than 50 miles from Harrisburg can bill the taxpayers for food and lodging expenses while they're about legislative business. The expenses are unvouchered, meaning they don't have to cough up the receipts the average cubicle drone would have to produce for accounting to justify their travel spending. The payments came even as nonprofits sweated keeping their doors open and school districts borrowed hundreds of millions of dollars to continue operation. At least one activist is crying foul.
Hershey Lodge and Convention Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania
House Majority Leader Rep. Dave Reed, (717) 705-7173
Senate President Pro Tempore Sen. Joe Scarnati, (717) 787-7084
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Jake Corman, (717) 787-1377