Nearly half of the budget for the Assembly’s expanded review of the 2020 election is earmarked for a data analysis contractor, according to a copy of the amended deal obtained this morning by WisPolitics.com.
The contractor, who isn’t identified in the budget, will be paid $325,000.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, has pledged a “cyber-forensic audit” of the 2020 election results. He told WisPolitics.com last week he will allow former Justice Michael Gableman, who’s heading the review, to define the parameters of that audit.
Meanwhile, some Republicans have called for an Arizona-style review of ballots that’s been conducted by the private firm Cyber Ninjas.
The budget, which covers Aug. 1-Dec. 31, totals $676,000. It includes $55,000 in pay for Gableman. The original contract with Gableman ran July 1-Oct. 31 and included $44,000 in salary for him.
The budget includes $125,000 for five investigators and $16,000 for an administrative assistant.
Investigators will be paid per month, “plus reasonable expenses including reimbursement for mileage, lodging and food.”
There is a line for $25,000 for travel reimbursement. Gableman traveled to Arizona last month to witness the much-maligned audit of the Maricopa County results. He also went to South Dakota to attend a symposium put on by My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell, who has been accused of spreading conspiracy theories about the election. Vos told WisPolitics.com those costs would be covered by Gableman’s salary.
Under the same subhead as the $325,000 for a data analysis contractor are lines for $15,000 to cover “communications” and $50,000 for outside legal counsel.
The rest of the budget includes: $10,000 for rent and $2,000 for office equipment; $50,000 for court reporting; and $3,000 for “services of process/filing.”
See the budget.