That’s how much the City of Columbus spent – your tax dollars – on Plexiglass and other materials in an effort prevent the spread of COVID in its buildings and offices.
Money well spent? Not according to some experts.
“Plexiglass barriers serve no purpose. In fact, they can be harmful because they can impede proper ventilation of a room,” says Linsey Marr, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech who studies viruses in the air.
Marr says Plexiglass can block large droplets but not aerosols – tiny solids or liquids that can flow around those see-through barriers.
A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that barriers set up around the desks at elementary schools in Georgia did not translate to lower infection rates, either.
Here is a breakdown of how Columbus officials spent your tax dollars on Plexiglass and workplace barriers. The data comes from the city's Dept. of Finance.
Dept. of Public Utilities - $25,021.69.
Dept. of Finance and Management - $181,596.39.
Dept. of Public Safety and Support Services - $31,574.43.
Dept. of Public Services - $1,298.30.
Columbus Public Health - $40,649.
Dept. of Parks and Recreation - $15,415.