Birmingham City Council to decide on costly trip

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The Birmingham City Council is expected to make a decision on Tuesday about a costly trip aimed at neighborhood development. It is a trip to Alaska that would cost the city hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The trip is for delegates from Birmingham's neighborhood associations to attend the Neighborhood USA Conference in Anchorage, Alaska in May. The cost is a staggering $360,000.

Nearly $330,000 would go toward air fare, hotel accomodations and ground transportation; about $30,000 for registration fees and another $1,500 would go toward the purchase of lapel pins made by a company in Vermont. Divided up by Birmingham's 99 neighborhoods, that is about $3,600 dollars per area.

The three items to spend more than $360,000 in taxpayer money on this trip are on the consent agenda at Tuesday's council meeting. As defined by the council, the consent agenda contains "routine and non-controversial" items. Because the trip is on the consent agenda, council members could spend the money without any debate.

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