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Cost of Johnson's Africa Trip Remains Unclear

Rosalind Helderman

There is still no word on how much Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) and aides spent on a trade mission to Senegal and Cameroon earlier this month.

County officials put out a two-page memo about the trip more than a week ago, describing Johnson's activities on the 12-day trip. That memo indicated that "a final accounting" of the costs of the trip would be completed and released today, "after all bills have been reconciled."

Spokesman John Erzen said today, however, that release of the information will be delayed. He said key people involved with putting together the trip's costs are on vacation or taking furlough days. Close to 6,000 county employees have been required to take 10 unpaid furlough days to save money this year.

County employees and others have questioned whether the trip was a good use of public money in a time of unprecedented budget troubles. Officials were also slow to release other details about the trip, including a full list of five county employees who accompanied Johnson. The memo that indicated a cost accounting would be available today had been intended to put such questions to rest.

Erzen said information about how much county taxpayers spent on the trip will be released as soon as it is available.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  December 29, 2008; 3:01 PM ET
Categories:  Prince George's County , Rosalind Helderman  
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Comments

I sure hope the U.S. Attorney is awaiting this report. I simply don't understand why a grand jury hasn't been empaneled to look into this matter.

Posted by: jugizuja | December 29, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

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