A Return To "Bad Old Days"
More Massport Corruption
Bureaucrats Get Bonuses On Top Of Bonuses, As Fees Rise
In a state where multiple agencies handle transportation unnecessarily, where it costs $3 just to exit Logan Airport and jobs are awarded to friends, relatives and cronies, it isn't easy to shock a well-conditioned public.
Yes, tax and tollpayers are worn down by so much fraud, waste and mismanagement, that it's rare for anyone to face consequences in the Bay State these days. With new revelations almost daily, does any one stand out?
Today's bombshell report, however, might be different. The Boston Herald and WRKO radio are leading with the news that Massport officials have been handing out huge "bonuses" (on top of other upcoming pay boosts) to cronies.
It should give Governor Romney new momentum for his reform crusade against these agencies:
(Boston Herald- 3 May 2005- Dave Wedge)
In a return to its free-spending bad old days, Massport is doling out more than $600,000 in bonuses to top managers despite its vow to shed its reputation for patronage and waste.
``They need to come forward and explain where this revenue is coming from,'' said state Sen. Steven A. Baddour, chairman of the Legislature's Joint Committee on Transportation. ``How are they paying for these (bonuses) when there's all kinds of talk of increases in fees?''
While hiking tolls and airport fees, the quasi-public agency handed out bonuses ranging from $2,000 to $10,000 to 149 managers under its ``Employee Outstanding Performance Incentive'' program.
The paycheck plums are on top of 3 percent bonuses due in July and mark the first time such bonuses have been issued at the agency.
Massport spokeswoman Danny Levy said the agency was ``proud'' of the bonuses.
``It's an added benefit to acknowledge the hard work of many employees,'' Levy said. ``We felt that in order to maintain staff morale and commitment this was the right thing to do.''
While Logan International Airport has yet to return to its pre-9/11 levels, Levy said the agency should be praised for its handling of the Democratic National Convention and the renovation of Terminal A, which was finished ahead of schedule and under budget.
She said the bonuses equal just 1 percent of the overall payroll for Massport's 1,100 employees.
The bonuses signal a return to the days when Massport was widely criticized for everything from politically connected hires to spending sprees and a notorious ``booze cruise.''