HOUSTON (FOX 26) - How to fund raises for firefighters under Prop B has the city looking for money under the proverbial couch cushions. City council member Michael Kubosh thinks he found some cash.
"I don't know how much of it is wrong or illegal, if any of it is. But citizens need to be aware that a whole lot of money is being spent that the city council never sees to vote on."
And it can add up.
In the last two years, the city has spent $112 million with United Airlines, over $100 thousand with the mayor's old law firm, and a lot of money with someone named Lorenzo Davi.
"Well he's collected $405 thousand from the city since 2010. I don't know who he is or what he does," said Kubosh.
By law, if a contract is under $50 thousand, the mayor's departments don't need to put it up for a vote, and it's been this way for years. But, it was almost $400 million in the last fiscal year.
Council member David Martin says if the council voted on everything, it would get nothing done. Here's his analysis.
Last year there were 149,000 such contracts.
The average contract was for $2,700. 92% of contracts are under $10,000. The mayor's office declined to comment, but this is an election year, so his challengers are.
"I think that before we lay off any firefighters or any employee of the city, we need to see this list of $400 million in expenses and see if any of that can be cut," said Bill King.
"There's an old expression, if you watch your pennies you'll watch your dollars." said Kubosh.