That's how much Northampton County Council spent for the laptops they lavished on themselves recently. Did they do this to make it easier to communicate with you? No, you won't find their email addresses listed on the county web page. That extra computer will make it easier for them to read this blog, but it will also make it easier for them to participate in back room shenanigans.
Don't think that happens? Look at the computer purchase. Not a single word was uttered about this transaction in any public meeting. Council instead buried the cost in recent "renovations" to their star chamber.
That's why council's proposed $500,000 slush fund, politely called a "contingency" fund, should be eliminated in its entirety. Council's surreptitious purchase of laptops is wasteful spending. Two members do not even use computers. Moreover, their secretive actions should be discouraged.
So what happens if an unforeseen expense arises? For that, we have the unrestricted cash reserve, the county's rainy day fund.
Eliminating this $500,000 in monopoly money will reduce budget expenditures by 0.2%. It's not much, but it's a start.