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Oxymoron – Bureaucratic Logic

Days after Governor Richardson’s transportation secretary Rhonda Faught makes some ridiculous statements rationalizing the out of control train budget, John Castillo, Albuquerque’s director of municipal development applies the same nonsensical reasoning (subscription) to the over budget excesses of the Tricentennial Towers:

The council adopted a resolution Nov. 7 capping the cost at $840,000, plus 5 percent for contingencies. That was after early estimates – some several years old and somewhat vague – put the project at $370,000 to $500,000.

The project cost is about $919,000, not including contingencies, according to the report by the city Office of Internal Audit and Investigations.

John Castillo, Albuquerque’s director of municipal development, defended the city’s handling of the project. He said the $840,000 approved by the council is for construction only, and the extra costs cited by auditors are probably related to design.

Thus, he said, the project is still within budget.

Anywhere from double to nearly triple original budget estimates, and he concludes “the project is still within budget.” Do we actually pay these people?