COLUMBIA — The Columbia City Council is scheduled to vote tonight to pay for two members of the Citizens Police Review Board to attend a conference in Seattle.
The four-day National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement conference is Sept. 20 to 24. According to a previous Missourian article, the board has requested $4,040 to send two representatives. Mayor Bob McDavid, who pledged to spend less on traveling and conferences in his campaign platform, suggested sending one representative for $2,020.
Here is an estimate of the cost to send one representative to the conference:
- Registration: If members register early (by July 16), the registration fee is $350 per person.
- Hotel: Conference attendees can reserve rooms at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel for $159.00 per night, plus an estimated 15.6 percent tax. For a four night stay, that is $735.20 per person.
- Airfare: If the board member flies out of the Kansas City airport Sept. 19 and returns on Sept. 23 following the conclusion of the conference at noon, an estimated cost of airfare for the cheapest Southwest Airlines flight available online is $139 each way, not including tax. Additional government fees and taxes not included in these prices are estimated at an additional cost of $35.40.
- Car fare: Mapquest.com estimates that the distance from Columbia to Kansas City is 144 miles, or a two hour and 17 minute drive. The Bureau of Transportation Statistics lists the average passenger car in the U.S. to have a 22.5 miles per gallon rate, as last calculated in 2007. With this estimated rate, the cost to drive to the airport in a passenger car is $17.32.
- What's left: So far, the cost to attend the conference is $1,415.92 per person. That leaves $604.08 for food and other expenses. Keep in mind the cost of airfare was the best possible price and the cost of car fare is calculated with an average mile per gallon estimate.