Joe Biden charges Secret Service for own protection

US Vice President Joe Biden arrives to meet with Democratic senators at the Capitol in Washington,DC on August 1, 2011 (AFP Photo / Nicholas Kamm)
Ugh. Toilet clogged again? Better call up Mr. Biden and see if he can get a plumber over here asap.

The Secret Service has found an unlikely landlord in Vice President Joe Biden. It was revealed this week that Mr. Biden has been renting out a cottage near his Delaware beach house to the Secret Service for $2,200 a month.

Recently obtained records show that the rental cottage outside of Wilmington has brought in around $13,000 for Biden since he started leasing it out to his own bodyguards in April. Additionally, the two parties have a contract going through 2013, at which point Biden would have brought in around $66,000 in rental payments.

But does he cover the utilities? Air conditioning can really cause a surge in electric bills during those simmering summer months.

“This arrangement seems bizarre to me,” says Citizens Against Government Waste's Leslie Paige to The Associated Press. "You'd think the vice president, who shepherded the deficit committee, would think twice about charging the Secret Service rent. Why would he need the money? I don't get it."

In 2010, Mr and Mrs Biden brought in near $400,000 collectively. You would think that the second-in-command of the largest economy in the world wouldn’t necessarily have to rent out his spare beach house to rake in some extra dough, but last year he reported $11,000 in income from the home.

Before moving into the Wilmington suburb summer cottage, Secret Service had been using another property not as close to the main Biden residence. The cottage was the main home to Mr Biden’s mother until she passed away in 2010.

The Secret Service pays the same amount of rent that Biden’s previous tenants did, who only recently moved out. If he doesn’t get the check by the fifth of the month though, he gets really pissed.