WILKES-BARRE TWP. — Wilkes-Barre Township Police Chief Will Clark said former President Donald Trump paid the bill — this time.

Chief Clark said the township recently received a full payment of $9,820.62 to pay for police overtime and public works at Trump’s Save America rally at the Mohegan Sun Arena in September. according to the material of the Internet news site Insider.

“Apparently, (Trump) was running a tab around the country,” Chief Clark said. “But this time we got paid.”

Executive Clark said he did nothing unusual — he simply sent the bill to the Trump campaign and, he said, to his surprise, received a check for payment.

Past rallies

Clark said as Trump held a rally at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Casey Plaza 2018 yearwhen former U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta of Hazleton ran for the U.S. Senate, the township was not reimbursed for the $22,000 cost of providing additional security.

The chief said that the village has been compensated Trump’s visit in October 2016 from $10,683.

Clark also noted that when current President George W. Bush came to town in 2007, the town was not compensated. Clark explained that the municipality cannot bill the US Secret Service for additional security for a sitting president. But when it’s a candidate rather than an incumbent, the question becomes whether the host municipality should pay for additional security with taxpayer money.

“The question is, is this fair?” Chief Clark asked.

Insider: Many cities don’t pay

Insider Nicole Gaudiano wrote about Trump’s payment to the town of Wilkes-Barre in an article published on the site Tuesday.

Gaudiano’s story said: “Despite Trump holding several rallies, the Save America PAC appears to have paid for police security services at one location during the 2022 election cycle — in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, according to a disclosed information from the Federal Election Commission, reviewed by Insider. It’s not clear how or why the city seems to have gotten so lucky with Trump, who is now preparing to run for president again in 2024.”

The report added: “During the Trump campaign, more than a dozen cities across the country — including Minneapolis; Spokane, Washington; Albuquerque, New Mexico; and Erie, Pennsylvania — said the Trump campaign would not pay the police and public safety bills, which together total nearly $2 million. All the while, Trump has touted himself as a pro-police candidate who has regularly chided Democrats for being soft on crime and anti-law enforcement.”

Trump’s office, the Republican National Committee and Barlett’s office did not respond to a request for comment, the report said.

Clark told Insider that the event required seven additional police officers, 15 local county sheriff’s deputies to assist, and overtime costs for Department of Public Works employees who used dump trucks to temporarily block the highway for Trump to enter.

Contact Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.

https://www.timesleader.com/news/1586016/surprised-wilkes-barre-township-chief-reports-trump-paid-rally-bill

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