When we celebrated a new teachers contract in 2004, a rather inebriated Pat Santeramo looked at my Honda Civic and asked “did you really have to buy a car made in Japan?”

I told him point blank to look at the VIN.  Hondas built in Japan have a “J” leading the VIN,

My Honda was built in Marysville, Ohio.

So when news came out that Santeramo hasn’t been using union contractors for work at the union headquarters, the stench is just too pungent to ignore.

$525 per month for groundskeeping seems a tad high for non union labor.

My own lawn guy would do the same job for about $100 per cut, or about $250 per month.

And believe me, I’ve expanded the estimate based on the size of the property.

And then there’s the $190,000 to Marstan Construction (non-union) which the AFT audit finds as “grossly overpaid.”

Reader Score Keeper asks on Bob Norman’s blog if it’s money laundering.

Good question.

One rising star out of all of this (pardon the play on words) is Executive Board member Leslie Janin Starr (seen here in her photo posted on BTU’s website) who actually did catch the scheming in progress and appropriately blew the whistle.

There are very few real heroes in the halls of Broward’s governmental entities.  Janin Starr is one of them.

According to Bob Norman’s report on Local 10,  Starr kept asking how much the union was paying (the non union construction company), but it kept getting shifted around in different budget items.

Sounds like a game of Three Card Monte to me.