City Hall

Afternoon Fizz: Former McGinn Advisor Bushnell May Have Written Order for 200 Cuts

By Erica C. Barnett February 17, 2010

More news in the neverending saga of Chris Bushnell, the former advisor to Mayor Mike McGinn who resigned after admitting he had falsely claimed to have a Ph.D. As we reported yesterday, a PubliCola records request revealed that Bushnell played a major, undisclosed role in many of McGinn's early decisions as mayor, including the controversial proposal to cut 200 strategic advisor and "senior management" positions.

Following up on that news, newly revealed city documents indicate that Bushnell may have personally written that order, along with four executive orders freezing hiring and pay for city workers and requiring mayoral approval of all new hires and consulting contracts.

Bushnell is listed as the "author" of all but one of the five documents signed by the mayor on his first day in office (the executive order requiring mayoral authorization for all city consulting contracts).

Although Bushnell had a city email address and computer at the mayor's office and participated in many high-level staff meetings for more than a month after McGinn was elected, the mayor did not reveal his role in the administration until late January, when he officially hired Bushnell as a senior advisor.

McGinn spokesman Mark Matassa said yesterday that he didn't know if Bushnell had been the primary author of the four orders, but added that he wouldn't be surprised if he had been at least partly responsible, given his heavy involvement with McGinn's transition team.
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