Gov. Tom Wolf says the committee that raised public and private money to put on last summer's Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia should have returned surplus funds to the taxpayers rather than handing out staff bonuses and grants.
The Legislature provided $10 million for the event, and some lawmakers voiced displeasure upon finding out that the host committee gave nearly $1 million in bonuses for staff members as well as grants for Philadelphia schools and nonprofits. The bonuses were disclosed in a Jan. 31 Federal Election Commission filing.
"I am disappointed that when the host committee discovered there was a surplus, the first call was not to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to discuss returning the money to the taxpayers," said Gov. Wolf. "The commonwealth supports large events that have an economic benefit to Pennsylvania and the region, but when there is leftover funding, that money should be returned to taxpayers. I am disappointed that the surplus was instead spent on bonuses and grants."
Wolf said Sunday that the commonwealth supports large events that can benefit the region, but leftover funding should be returned to taxpayers.
Former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, the host committee's chairman, called the bonuses a reward for low pay and long hours.