31 August 2005

Cost of Corruption Continues to Climb

The Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC) invested $50m in rare coins, $13m of which is so far "lost".

On Monday, the State Controlling Board approved Attorney General Jim Petro's request for funds to hire attorneys in the lawsuit. The approval, which covers this year's costs only, brings the total legal bill to about $7.3m so far. Added to the "lost" money, it brings the total cost (known) of corruption to about $20m.

The article also mentions "another $1.9 million for workers' compensation lawsuits not related to the scandal." I wonder what that's about. Is it normal for the BWC to be sued for millions of dollars every year? How much of that is recouped (the BWC can ask for repayment of legal costs if it wins, apparently)?

I don't know if this case is typical, but in this case the legal cost of corruption is fifty cents on the dollar.

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