Tuesday Weisblog: How much are Shum’s pants worth?

When Shum Darwin of Nebraska was released from jail in May, there was a small detail that local authorities could not clear up.

He was wearing University of Nebraska sweatpants when he was arrested and incarcerated – and now these pants were nowhere to be found.

No one apparently argued that Darwin should not be reimbursed for the missing sweatpants, but that’s where the story gets interesting or, more specifically, ridiculous.

The Lancaster County board actually spent valuable time – and taxpayer money – haggling over the value of the sweatpants. Darwin said they were worth $12 and expected to be reimbursed that total. However, Bernie Heier, the Chair of the Lancaster Board, was only willing to offer $10.

Commissioner Ray Stevens thought $12 was a fair price, while Commissioner Deb Schorr also thought $10 was the right value for the sweats.

When Schorr made a motion to give Darwin $10, Stevens changed the motion to $12. Schorr reluctantly decided that $12 would have to be the price, and the vote passed 2-1, with Heier the one dissenting vote, still not wanting to pony up the extra two bucks.

It’s interesting that they’d argue that much over two dollars when there are so many other big-ticket items they should be focusing on. And anyway, where are you gonna find a pair of college sweatpants for $10 these days?

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