Grab a cup of Joe at Mielke’s Coffee Shop

Head up to the sixth floor of the Clark County Public Service Center and Commissioner Tom Mielke will buy you a cup of coffee.

But he’ll do it begrudgingly.

The sixth floor provides free coffee to folks visiting the penthouse level of county government. Most of the top county officials, including the county commissioners, are supposed to throw in some cash for the cause as the expense isn’t part of the county budget.

Problem is, that’s not how it works in practice.

This blog has publicly shamed Commissioner Steve Stuart for not paying his coffee tab in the past.

And, apparently, not everyone knows the going rate for contributing to the coffee fund.

Mielke asked why the price of coffee has skyrocketed during the commissioners’ Wednesday board time meeting. Mielke has been throwing in $20 a month to the community coffee pot, and he says he rarely takes a cup out of it.

Turns out, the going contribution is $10 per commissioner per month.

“I’ve been getting screwed,” Mielke exclaimed upon hearing the news.

Mielke hinted at the coffee becoming an office expense, but pulled that plan back pretty quickly with a chuckle, saying he would pay his dues.

So would the fiscal conservative really pass the cost of a cup of Joe on to the taxpayers by putting it on the county budget?

“Nah,” Mielke said after the meeting. “I just think it costs way too much for (office assistant Jennifer Clark) to be buying the coffee then going around trying to collect money. It wastes time.”

But then he added, “I do think it’s good to provide coffee.”

So it looks like Mielke’s Coffee Shop will remain open for business.


Wait, let’s fix that.


Erik Hidle

Erik Hidle

Erik Hidle covers Clark County government for The Columbian. He can be followed on facebook at, on Twitter at @col_clarkgov or contacted by email at

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