Sunday, March 02, 2008

Jim Paul: 'Champion of Travel'

Intrepid investigative journalist Michael Stewart reports in today's Pensacola News Journal that disgraced school superintendent Jim Paul has been racking up more out-of-state conference trips -- and expenses -- than any other school chief in Northwest Florida. In fact, "Paul spent more money on travel than the five other superintendents combined."
Since January of last year, Escambia County School Superintendent Jim Paul has spent 66 days away from work attending 17 professional conferences — an average of one trip every three weeks.
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[A]n examination of Paul's travel records last year compared to members of the Escambia School Board and five other Florida school superintendents shows he is the champion of travel.
Paul's defense seems to be that Pensacola is such a backwater burg, who wouldn't want to escape it for a little lobbying action elsewhere? He told the News Journal, "We live in Pensacola on the edge of Alabama. Nobody comes here."

Tell that to the tourist bureau.

This latest bamboozle is about as convincing as the excuses Jim Paul put on offer after being arrested on drunk driving charges. Especially when you notice that so many of the cities he 'conferenced' at -- Boston, Las Vegas, Tampa, and New Orleans, among others -- happen to be within easy driving distance of gambling casinos.

On the other hand, maybe he just needs a lot of parking lot naps.

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