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January 5th, 2011
The Obama's Million Dollar Hawaii Holiday

The cost information is not released by the White House, but the newspaper pulled together some data to make an estimate. The cost of Air Force 1, the president’s plane, as well as the cost of housing for he and his staff can make the tab quite high.

The government must also pay the Secret Service for protection and overtime for local police. These are just a few of the costs that come with protecting the world’s most powerful human being.

Some of the cost estimates presented by the newspaper include the early trip to Hawaii for Mrs. Obama (who flew out before the president), at $63,000. There is President Obama’s round trip, estimated to cost $1 million. Local police need an extra quarter million for overtime costs and there is the $134,000 estimated cost of housing the president’s staff.

- Rental of office building in Kailua on canal
- Security upgrades and additional phone lines
- Costs for car rentals and fuel for White House staff staying at Moana Hotel (Secret Service imports most of the cars used here to escort the president)
- Surveillance before the president arrives
- Travel costs for Secret Service and White House staff traveling ahead of the President

TOTAL COST: $1,474,200

Editor’s note per a reader – add another $280,000: Hawaii Reporter was informed that we left out a major expense from this report.
The cost of transporting the Presidential limos, helicopters and other support equipment on a USAF C-17 cargo aircraft. The flight time between Andrews AFB and Hawaii is about 10 hours at approximately $7,000 per hour operating cost. Round trip, this would be at least $140,000 per aircraft. (Sometimes there are more than one aircraft for the support equipment). In addition to the limousines and supporting equipment, the United States Marine Corps provides at least one Presidential Helicopter that is also transported to the site via a C-17.
Add another round trip for a C-17 per helicopter, along with the cost of pilots, support crews, and test flights for the helicopter. The helicopter is brought along on every Presidential trip even if there are no plans for use, it is kept on standby for the duration of the trip. Hawaii Reporter’s estimate came up at least $280,000 short due to the omission of the C-17 use.

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