From his column:
How in the name of all that is holy can you spend $84.5 million in just 101 days?Read his full column, "Legislature works at its hardest when taking care of itself," at the newspaper's Web site.
"It's stunning, isn't it?" state Rep. Josh Shapiro, a Democrat from suburban Philadelphia, replied when I asked.
That's how much America's Largest Full-Time State Legislature spent this past summer and fall while dawdling over the only real job its 253 members have.
That would be passing a budget on time. It came in more than three months late.
The daily tab for tardiness came to almost $837,000. That covered all the costs -- salaries, perks, travel, utilities, printing, mail, phones -- for the House, the Senate, their office staff and the various agencies that support them: the Legislative Budget and Finance Commission, the Legislative Reference Bureau, the Department of Redundancy Department, etc.
And after you read it, you find your blood pressure reaching the boiling point, just remember that all 203 members of the House and 25 members of the Senate face re-election in 2010. You can do something about it ... but only if you're willing to change the cast of characters currently occupying Harrisburg.