Taxpayer Foundation in the news exposing $100,000 wasted on city hall TV

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Taxpayer Foundation researcher Richard Leonetti was on KATU-TV over Hillsboro paying $100,000 for a jumbo-tron TV.

KATU-TV News transcript — Dec. 10 2015:  The City of Hillsboro spent more than $110,000 on a large television display used during city council meetings at the Shirley Huffman Auditorium at the Hillsboro Civic Center.”If you ‘re attending the city council meeting, you’re going to be able to look up here and see the document that is going to be discussed or an historic photo,” City of Hillsboro spokesperson Patrick Preston said. “If you ‘re attending the city council meeting, you’re going to be able to look up here and see the document that is going to be discussed or an historic photo.”  Richard Leonetti with the Taxpayer Foundation of Oregon believes the city should have gone with a much less expensive tool.

“Somebody didn’t think about my taxes. They just thought about what was great without any regard to the cost,” he said. “If they were thinking cost, they would have done a little shopping and come up with a different solution. I suspect a projector would have done it.”

Projectors are used by the Portland City Council and the State of Oregon.

KATU looked into costs of large-venue projectors, several of which run for under $10,000. A professional video screen installer said projecting an image would have cost half as much.

When confronted with the costs, Preston said, “I’m glad you asked because you could easily make an opinion about this based on a comparison between this video display and the TV you have in your home. And that would be kind of like comparing a car you were looking to purchase and a bus you were purchasing for the community. This is a display we will use for the next 10 years or more.”

The monitor is made up of 16 LCD panels, at almost $6,000 a piece. By KATU’s calculations, if the city had reduced the size of the monitor, they could have saved more than $40,000.

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