…which is aimed at providing a basis from which the mayor-president Sharon Weston Broome will proceed to give her pals and cronies patronage contracts from the East Baton Rouge Parish government.
The East Baton Rouge Metro Council agreed Wednesday to fund a $300,000 disparity study of City Hall’s purchases, contracts and bids with small and disadvantaged businesses, a move Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome’s administration said could lead to more local companies doing government business.
Slightly more than 9 percent of City Hall’s 1,115 purchase orders in 2016 went to small and minority-owned businesses, said Chief Administrative Officer Darryl Gissel. Nearly half of the East Baton Rouge Parish population is black, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2016 figures.
The functional percentage here isn’t what percentage of the population is black. It’s what percentage of the business owners are black. We already know that percentage is closer to the nine percent than the 50 percent.
Broome’s administration had said the study could give the city-parish the legal framework to adopt goals for inclusion of certain types of businesses in its contracts. The study will focus on minority-owned businesses, women-owned businesses, veteran-owned businesses, small businesses and medium-sized businesses.
After the Metro Council voted 8-to-3 to approve the study, the audience broke into applause.
Chandler Loupe missed the meeting. The three Republicans who opposed this boondoggle were Scott Wilson, Barbara Frieburg and Dwight Hudson. Matt Watson and Buddy Amoroso agreed to part with your money to fund the study because, apparently, there was enough language in it inclusive of small business in general which doesn’t involve racial set-asides, or whatever.
The correct position would be to oppose this study and, as we’ve written before, to tell Broome that if she wants to hire a bunch of black-owned businesses to get patronage contracts a fiscally-responsible city wouldn’t let to begin with, that she should knock herself out. She won the election in 2016, after all, and to the victor go the spoils. But if she was going to do that it would be her responsibility and her funeral if and when the money for those contracts was wasted or stolen, and that they weren’t going to let her share the blame with them.
What this study does, regardless of what the Broome administration might say in order to make it more palatable, is to put the Metro Council’s imprimatur on what’s coming – which is an orgy of public patronage being distributed to Broome’s friends and allies. She’ll now be able to let useless contracts for corrupt ends to cronies with a patina of respectability, since the Metro Council has now voted to commission a study saying not enough black-owned businesses are catching checks from the city-parish. And when those contracts turn out to reflect the same quality of decision-making which prevailed when Broome looted the BRAVE program to give contracts like the one Arthur “Silky Slim” Reed was granted to teach kids to respect the police, now it’ll be on the Republicans on the Metro Council who have given a bipartisan stamp of approval to it.
That was a mistake, and one which will surely cause significant embarrassment going forward.
UPDATE: Oh – and here’s somebody who’s happy as a clam about all this…
Translation: they’re not about ending racism. As Thomas Sowell said, they want to put it under new management.