Medina to bill former Costco CEO for Obama visit costs

MEDINA, Wash. -- The city of Medina says its taxpayers won't be footing the bill for President Obama's visit to former Costco CEO Jim Sinegal's home as part of the president's whirlwind fundraising tour Tuesday afternoon across the Seattle and Eastside areas.

Instead, they're going to send the bill to Sinegal, according to Medina City Manager Mike Sauerwein.

"We love welcoming people to what we think is one of the most attractive communities in Puget Sound," Sauerwein said. "We just don't feel that we should be passing the costs of the events to our citizens."

In previous presidential visits, city taxpayers have had to cover as much as $35,000 in police overtime for security and other issues, Sauerwein said. But during last Monday's City Council meeting, members directed staff to charge the host of the Democratic fundraiser event for police overtime.

Sauerwein says the city doesn't know yet what Tuesday's bill will amount to just yet. The entire seven members of Medina's police force will be working the visit with some help from the State Patrol, King County Sheriff's Office and other law enforcement agencies.

But Sinegal can expect a bill for the entire amount.

"We just don't think that's a cost that should be passed on to taxpayers, so we are going to be billing the host of the event for that cost," Sauerwein said.

Obama's Seattle stop is just the first of three West Coast stops to raise funds for the Democratic Party.
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