DNC Rejects Westport Overtime Request Following Obama Visit

President Barack Obama's visit to Westport on August 6 cost the town of Westport nearly $15,000 in overtime fees, something that will not be reimbursed by the Democratic National Committee.


The Democratic National Committee has notified the Town of Westport it will not pay in President , Westport First Selectman Gordon Joseloff said in a news release today.

The town had sent a request to the DNC and Obama for America, with a copy to Westport resident Harvey Weinstein, to pay $14,812 in the overtime costs incurred  August 6 to attend a fundraiser in Stamford and .


Interested in Westport's news, events, community bulletins, blogs and businesses? Sign up for the free Westport Patch daily newsletter, "like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


“Please note that as a private organization, the DNC did not participate in ,” wrote Amada Howe, chief operating officer of the DNC in an August 14 letter to Joseloff. “All such decisions, including their impact on costs incurred by federal, state or local governments are exclusively within the control of the appropriate government officials.

“Should there be a question about the allocation of expenses among the cooperating authorities, we assume that it should be directed to the U.S. Secret Service.”

Joseloff said he has not received a response from Obama for America or Weinstein. “I didn’t expect that we would get repayment, but it was worthwhile to ask,” he said.

Michael Schreder August 20, 2012 at 11:04 PM
Michael Schreder August 20, 2012 at 11:06 PM
what else would you expect from the DNC?
John Izzo August 20, 2012 at 11:07 PM
I belive Mr Weinstein should step to the front, and pay this bill in the interest of the public welfare, of course the same thing would apply should Mitt Romney pay a visit to Westport. I hope Mr Weinstein will set the table John Izzo
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 21, 2012 at 12:32 AM
Michael, Do you think Obama for America should step up and pay the bill here?
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 21, 2012 at 12:33 AM
John, Do you think Mr. Weinstein will pay for our town's overtime costs?
georgia August 21, 2012 at 12:48 AM
Yes he should , as well as those who paid the 35,000 ? per plate to attend the fundraiser and Mr Weinsteins home.
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 21, 2012 at 01:21 AM
Georgia, After making nearly $2,000,000 for the campaign, wouldn't you think Obama for America would pay the $15,000?
John Izzo August 21, 2012 at 12:48 PM
Chris yes I think Obama for America should pay,my point would be, that it is far more difficult to get them to pay as Obama makes countless visits across the country. They would not want to be paying in Westport as it would set them up to pay everywhere else. In this case I still feel Mr Weinstein should step forward. John Izzo
Charlene August 21, 2012 at 03:25 PM
I don't understand... If I call the PD to book a police officer for traffic control for an event I'm having, I have to pay, in advance! Why didn't Mr Weinstein have to pay?
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 21, 2012 at 07:03 PM
John, I agree. Westport had made previous attempts to recover similar costs without success when President Clinton visited three times in 1998-99 for fundraising events. Do you think this situation is any different?
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 21, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Charlene, That is an excellent question that I will certainly look into for you. Did your event require one officer or more? How much did it cost for their time?
Concerned Parent August 21, 2012 at 07:53 PM
Yep, there's our President, champion for the working man...flying around on AirForce1 to glamorous fundraisers and stiffing local agencies....
John Izzo August 21, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Chris in a word no,Charlene is of course right
Charlene August 21, 2012 at 09:00 PM
The event was actually in Southport so we used Fairfield PD - This was last year in October $57 per hour minimum of 4 hours per cop The police department required us to have a cop car to shut down the road - $20/hr
Paul Lowenstein August 22, 2012 at 11:13 AM
Hi Chris Rueli, Personally, I feel that you, professionally, should not be offering your opinion. What do you think? This is in regards to your August 21st remarks at 3:03 pm and 9:21 pm. Thank you....
Paul Lowenstein August 22, 2012 at 11:17 AM
The Fairfield PD charges a minimum for OT? That's outrageous! Do Westport and other PD's charge a minimum as well? Frankly, I'm tired of seeing cops (I live in Somerville, MA but grew up and still visit my parents in Westport) being paid OT, specifically for construction areas. I can understand if it is a busy area, but for less busy areas, a flag man is more than adequate. Sorry, didn't mean to jump on my soapbox.
4bagger August 23, 2012 at 03:43 AM
this is crazy..... like going to a 5 star restaurant and not leaving a tip, nothing but unmitigated arrogance that even the pseudointellectual libs in this town can't defend.
Chris Rueli (Editor) August 23, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Paul, I have lived in Westport for some time now. My brother is a Westport resident as well. I care about the town and the financial situation it currently sits in. As you mentioned, you do not live in Westport, so I'll assume you're not familiar with Westport's current financial crisis. Do you think a town facing a $70 million OPEB miscalculation can afford to spend cash on things that it sees no benefit from? The fact here is that Obama's campaign took home $2 million at Weinstein's fundraiser and it cost the town $15,000. Who do you think should pay the bill?
Bart Shuldman August 23, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Chris--OPEB was projected at $100 million. Amazing to read anyone thinking the town should cover this cost when it was for a private matter. It was not goverment work--it was a fund raiser. Anyone trying to use local police, etc., always gets charged and normally pay upfront. But when our First Selectman comes our from the beginning saying he doesnt think we will get reimbursed--then the cards are played.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something