in Houston, Texas
Taxpayer bill for Perrys' security detail on economic development trip: $129K
Tuesday, Sep 21, 2010, 10:46AM CST
By Mark Lisheron

Taxpayers spent more than $129,000 for the Texas Department of Public Safety to provide security for Gov. Rick Perry and his wife, Anita, while they were on a one-week economic development trip to Asia.

The Associated Press is reporting some of the details of the travel expenses today at the same time the state Supreme Court is deliberating over a lawsuit brought by newspapers to have released the travel records of Perry's DPS security team for trips taken outside of Texas in 2007. A full brief of the case presented by Cox Texas Newspapers and Hearst Newspapers can be found here. There is no deadline for the state's high court to rule in the case.

TexasOne, a nonprofit corporation supported by business and individual donations through the Texas Economic Development Corp. paid all expenses for the Perrys to attend the Shanghai World Expo 2010 in June, according to a statement from the governor's office.

Taxpayers, however, picked up $34,339 in airfare for the security detail and $20,202 for its hotel bill, according to the Associated Press. Security officers received base pay of $24,222 and $22,769 in overtime pay while on the Perry trip. How many officers comprised the detail and where they stayed while in Asia were among the details not disclosed for security reasons, a point of contention in the newspapers' lawsuit against the Department of Public Safety.

Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or

Photo of a street in Shanghai by flickr user Stuck in Customs, used via a Creative Commons license.

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