government in action
Two doozies from St. Louis and Seattle-- courtesy of News of the Weird...
East St. Louis, Ill., policeman Kristopher Weston apprehended a murder suspect about 20 minutes after the crime in April, which was such a nice piece of police work that the mayor called Weston before the city council to commend him. Five minutes after Weston left the room, the council got down to regular business, the first order of which was to approve a list of police and firefighter layoffs due to budget shortfalls, and on the list because of low seniority was Officer Kristopher Weston. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 4-15-09]
Recently the Washington Supreme Court ruled that Seattle had for two years improperly charged water customers for servicing hydrants when the city should have covered the service from general tax funds, and it ordered customer refunds averaging $45. However, Seattle then discovered it had insufficient general funds to pay for hydrant service and thus imposed a water surcharge of $59 per customer, according to a February KOMO-TV report. The most likely reason the surcharge was higher is that the city had to pay $4.2 million to the attorneys who filed the account-shuffling lawsuit. [KOMO-TV, 2-13-09]