Commissioners raid Gramercy Park Community Center and Science Museum fund
Boca Raton, FL – With no debate during the March 23, 2010 county commission meeting our county commissioners redirected $800,000 to the John and Tussi Kluge Center for Creative Education. The vote was 7-0 which meant every commissioner on the dais was in favor of this subsidy.
Karl Dickey, candidate for Palm Beach County Commission said today, “Perhaps they felt sorry for Mr. Kluge who saw his net worth drop from $9B to $6B this past year so they felt the need to fill the gap for his project while diverting funds from their intended purposes. Public bonds are voted on by the public for a specific purpose and shouldn’t be raided as we see time and again by politicians for different purposes. I thought we had at least two fiscal conservatives on the Board, apparently not. Unfortunately for Palm Beach County taxpayers this is not an April Fool’s Day joke.”
John Kluge can be found on the Forbes World’s Billionaires list and is a resident on the island of Palm Beach. Last year Kluge gave $400 million to Columbia University which begs the question, if he can afford to give Columbia $400 million, certainly he could find $800,000 to “fill the gap” of an education center that bears his name.
Karl Dickey applauds Mr. Kluge’s financial success and his great philanthropy, simply not at the expense to the taxpayers of Palm Beach County.
The funds were derived from the 2002 $50 Million Recreational and Cultural Facilities Bond which had a specific project list designated by the county commission at the time. Much of the public bond money was to be used for the expansion of the South Florida Science Museum.