N&O: In midst of recession, Governor Perdue hires more expensive executive chef

BY ROB CHRISTENSEN
RALEIGH NEWS & OBSERVER

RALEIGH -- These are hard times in state government, but not so difficult that Gov. Bev Perdue didn't trade up for a more expensive chef at the Executive Mansion last summer.

Indeed, while Perdue has engaged in some belt-tightening in the governor's office during the recession, she has not undertaken a full-fledged austerity campaign. She has reduced the positions funded by her office by 15 percent, but through funding by other sources has been able to keep roughly the same number of staff.

Take the case of Stephen Moravick, who cooked in the mansion for 12 years under three governors. In August, she replaced him with David Gaydeski, the chef for a decade at the Carolina Club in Chapel Hill, where Perdue is a member. Gaydeski started out at $76,000 a year, about $6,000 more than Moravick was making.

"It wasn't my choice," said Moravick, when reached at The Cedars, an upscale retirement community in Chapel Hill, where he is now the chef. "She decided it was time for a change. There was no notice."

Despite the chef upgrade, Perdue's staff says her office has worked to keep costs down in the new climate.

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Today, NCGOP Chairman Robin Hayes released the following statement regarding the Governor’s reluctance to cut spending, especially her own: “Despite an almost $3 billion budget gap, Governor Perdue refuses to make the difficult decisions necessary to get North Carolina back on the right track. While North Carolinians are struggling to put food on their own kitchen tables, Governor Perdue has decided to give her executive chef a raise. The Governor claims she is willing to cut spending but her actions prove to the contrary, especially if those spending cuts affect her chef, clients of her son’s firm, her own staff and others politically connected to the Governor. It is unfortunate that Governor Perdue has again put her own self-interest above the interests of the people of North Carolina.”

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In response to Thomas, that is what is wrong with America today. We have people that continue to justify expenditures that have no business being made in the Government.

They day that someone can sit there and justify that a CHEF's job is more important than a teacher in the public schools system, is they day that I can sell someone the Golden Gate Bridge.

What ticks me off is the fact of the Chef's salary, wether he is working or not, and yet the school systems will be losing alot of teachers this coming year due to State budget cuts. In my honest, working person (with common sense) opinion, education for any child or children, regardless of age is way more important than a professional chef working in the Governor's Mansion,

Then, you ask who will cook for the events at the Mansion? Get someone to cook for free, as a donation to the State Government. As a taxpayer, I see Public Safety, Education and Infrastructure as the most important things that the Government should not make cuts to.

How did Mizz Perdue get to DC recently? I bet you she didn't pay for that trip out of her pocket like I was forced to as a taxpayer of this State. Why can't she pay for the Chef out of her own pocket? Oh, wait, thats right, she's in Big Government, were they can spend spend spend and then to make up for it, the cut cut cut and then tax tax tax...

Okay this is just absurd.

Every time there is a budget crunch we start talking about the chefs at the Governors Mansion. This is a very real and needed position. The Governor (Democratic OR Republican) does not have the time to cook the tons of meals that are consumed there for all the events.

The mansion is a tool Governors use to bring business to our state. Get deals done on legislation and yes bringing the leadership from both parties together to hammer out details on any number of issues facing the state.

Lets keep in mind that the Chefs at the mansion cook for the big events - there is a private kitchen in the upstairs residence and as Mrs. Hunt did they sometimes prepare their own meals when it is just the family.

You must be enjoying the 76000 dollars you're getting.

YOUR LAZY AZZ up and cook your own dang food like the rest of us....PFffft...servant of the people...

CANNOT GET HERE FAST ENOUGH!!!

Just eat cake my dear lowly peasants.

have a chef? She's on the road so much, one would wonder what the chef does when she is away.

Just this AM, I saw she had been hob nobbing with the White House this week-end. Did she take the chef or the First Husband with her?

Meanwhile private sector jobs continue to fade and the budget shortfall does not disipate. The house & senate know the cuts which must be made. She has not caught on.

I love this. I think I'm in the wrong profession. Hey Bev, here is an idea. Cook your own food. there is a savings of 76000 dollars right there. And while you are at it, buy your own clothes and dress yourself. There's another 100000 dollars. Wow, at this rate we will make up a budget shortfall in no time. What's that? You can't cook? No problem, this is the south baby. We have some of the best chefs in the country here and they'll teach you how to cook for free.

Sounds like "Mizz Perdoo" is not practicing what she is preaching. I say let her cook her own darn meals like I have to do at home. Since I am paying higher taxes at the fuel pump, higher property taxes and higher costs for everything (food, water, clothes etc), why can't she cook for herself?

That would be about 76,000.00 a year that could save the jobs of two or three entry level state employees at DOT, DOC, NC Forest Service and then some. People that NEED a job, in order to support THEIR FAMILIES and PAY TAXES to the government on things that shouldn't be taxed like they are.

In French, Perdue means "lost" and I truly believe that is the best way to describe this woman. I also believe that is what she should have done at the last election.