Sen. Millin Young spent $6,900 on two taxpayer-funded trips
Published: October 31, 2012
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ST. THOMAS - In her first term in office during the 29th Legislature, Sen. Janette Millin Young took three trips out of the territory.
Only two of the trips were paid for by taxpayers, she said.
Those two trips cost taxpayers just more than $6,900.
Millin Young's travel records only indicate that she received the $100 per diem amount for each day of travel, and what she spent on food and beverages is not itemized.
In April 2011, Millin Young spent seven days in San Francisco at the National School Board Association's annual conference.
She spent $3,107.19 on the trip.
Millin Young said the members of the V.I. Board of Education attend the conference each year, and they suggested she attend in her capacity as chairwoman of the Senate Education, Culture and Youth Committee.
"My purpose for that was to see how jurisdictions actually run school boards in the states," she said. "Here we run a little different."
Millin Young said she is using what she learned at the conference to craft legislation revising the duties and responsibilities of the Board of Education and the V.I. Education Department under the V.I. Code.
"There's a lot of contradictory language in the V.I. Code," she said. "Such reform you can't just do overnight."
She said attending conferences provides needed education for senators.
"Establishing connections and networking is very important in this job of oversight," she said. "You don't come in knowing everything."
She said it helps to look at other locations and see what works, so the territory does not have to re-invent the wheel all the time.
Millin Young also attended the 2011 Seatrade Cruise Shipping conference in Miami from March 14-17.
She spent $3,799.88 on the trip.
Millin Young said she went as a member of the Senate's Economic Development Committee and learned about new regulations on cruise ship emissions. The information led to a resolution passed by the Senate later that year urging the federal government to ease restrictions on emissions in V.I. waters to protect the cruise ship industry, she said.
From March 2-5, 2011, Millin Young attended the National Governors Association's State Strategies to Improve School Principal Preparation forum in Orlando, Fla.
She said she was invited by the association, and the entire $1,100.34 trip was paid for by the association.
The travel records show that Millin Young received a cash advance of $1,009.11. However, no documentation provided to The Daily News by the Legislature's business office shows reimbursement of that amount by the National Governors Association.
The travel records do contain a copy of a second check from the Legislature made out to Millin Young in the amount of $40.30. That check stub contains the comment, "Reimburse for Check from National Governors Associ."
- Contact reporter Aldeth Lewin at 714-9111 or email email@example.com.