Contracts must be scrutinized

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Call it putting state government under the microscope. But if that's what it's going to take to help get Minnesota's deficit down to reality, so be it.

The latest proof that some portions of state government need further scrutinization was a recent Associated Press report that some state agency leaders decided to hand out $188 million worth of state contracts -- without any competition.

One example included $40,000 given to a Denver-based humorist who charged $4,500 a day so Minnesota's welfare workers could learn how to use humor on the job.

Email newsletter signup

We're not laughing.

The story gave insight that some state employees just found it easier to award a contract to a group or person because either they a) knew them or b) knew they could get the job done and didn't have to work on trying to find someone else who may have been able to do the same job, but at a different price.

Folks, that's just laziness.

We're hopeful that Gov. Tim Pawlenty will continue with his mission on reducing governmental largesse. It's going to take everyone's teamwork -- including state employees -- to help find ways to lower our budget deficit.

No one wants to see increased fees, less governmental aid and higher taxes. Yet that's what we'll continue to face in the years to come unless everyone does their part to help solve this financial fiasco.