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Donald Trump blows off Burlington bills - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Donald Trump blows off Burlington bills

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Last month, Donald Trump's campaign spent nearly $9.5 million on expenses. Yet the presidential candidate has continued to blow off the $8,500 he owes the city of Burlington. Now, the mayor tells WCAX News he's considering taking action against Trump.

"Well, I think he certainly can afford to pay it and I think he should," said Mayor Miro Weinberger, D-Burlington.

Weinberger is not happy Trump is blowing off Burlington. The presidential candidate owes the city thousands and the bills are 60 days past due.

"Eighty-five-hundred bucks is not nothing for the city of Burlington. We have not gotten responses to our outreach emails and phone calls," said Weinberger. 

These bills stem from Trump's January visit. The Republican candidate spoke to a full house at the Flynn Theater. The rally attracted a throng of protesters and hundreds of supporters who could not fit inside the venue.

"They invited more than 20,000 people to come to a theater that only had 1,400 seats," said Weinberger. 

Weinberger accuses the campaign of poorly organizing the event and failing to communicate with city leaders. Burlington did not have a written agreement with the Trump campaign, in part because the rally was hosted on private property. But the city got involved after learning the event was overbooked, forcing police to shut down streets and set up barricades to prevent clashes between the opposing groups.

"I think our police department did a great job managing what could have been a dangerous situation. And we had to incur some overtime to do so, and I think he should pay the overtime," said Weinberger. 

In February, the city billed the Trump campaign-- $7,200 to cover the cost of staffing 32 police officers and another $1,260 to pay for four fire personnel and two rescue vehicles. 

"A polar opposite experience is the experience the city had in this presidential cycle with Senator Sanders' campaign for president," said Weinberger. 

In May, Democrat Bernie Sanders hosted his presidential kickoff on the Burlington waterfront. His campaign signed an agreement with the city in advance outlining police and fire costs and penalties if payment was late. Sanders' campaign was billed $858 for four police officers, two fire personnel and one rescue vehicle. The invoice was paid on time.

The mayor denies his push for compensation has anything to do with party lines.

"No. I mean it isn't. Other than the Democrat, in this case, paid their bills," said Weinberger 

The city was snubbed twice before by the Democrats when President Obama and the first lady each visited the Queen City on fundraising missions. The Democratic National Committee was billed about $2,000 in public safety costs for each of those appearances. Records show those invoices were never paid.

We reached out to the Trump campaign several times to ask if they're disputing the charges or if they plan to pay. Our phone calls and emails had not yet been returned when this story was published.

Burlington's mayor says within two weeks he'll decide whether to take further action, but he declined to say what that action may be.

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