Philly Councilman Pays Firm 28K for Tweets

53-year-old Jim Kenney says he has a contract with Chatterblast to send out his tweets and Facebook messages

A Philadelphia city councilman is spending $28,000 in taxpayer money 140 characters at a time.

The Philadelphia Daily News reports Councilman Jim Kenney is paying an outside contractor $28,800 to send Twitter and Facebook updates on his behalf. Kenney says he contracted ChatterBlast to communicate with younger constituents.

"I, at 53 years old, do not have that facility," Kenney tells "So I need consultant advice to communicate with a group of folks who are not necessarily in my age group."
Kenney says he sometimes tweets on his own and otherwise approves all tweets written by ChatterBlast, although one tweet from Kenney's account last year wrongly said he wasn't up for re-election.

A ChatterBlast co-founder defended the contract, saying Twitter is an avenue of communication that has helped solve citizens' problems.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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