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Audit shows Slaughter financial issues linger

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PORT ALLEN - An audit conducted on Port Allen's finances raised red flags surrounding issues that were taking place under recalled mayor Deedy Slaughter's watch.

The audit was released two days after she qualified to run for mayor for a second time. Voters recalled her in November by a wide margin after Slaughter has been the focus of numerous News 2 Investigative Unit reports.

The audit found the mayor's auto allowance and salary exceeded the amount budgeted and authorized by the city council. Leaders said Slaughter was paid a car allowance of $500, but should have only received $400. The audit shows the Mayor has not repaid the excess auto allowance she received.

The audit also called out Slaughter's hiring practices, saying she didn't follow proper procedures. As a result, the city faces possible legal action by applicants who were not considered for positions.

Auditors said the Port Allen city council should also look at pursuing restitution from the mayor for legal fees she paid attorneys using city funds. It also said the council needs to put procedures in place to make sure all legal fees are reviewed and approved by the council prior to payment.

News 2 reached out to the former mayor. Her husband said they are dealing with a death in the family, and his wife would do interviews after the funeral. 

Today, supporters of Slaughter said despite the audit, they stand behind her.

"They really didn't give her a chance to show herself or what she can do," Savatria Morgan said.  "Yes, she may have had some slip ups but they didn't give her a chance in my opinion."

Interim Mayor Lynn Robertson said since she was appointed by the governor in December, she's been trying to clean things up. 

"As a citizen and former mayor who tried to do the right thing, it's not what people want to see," Robertson said. "We want to know what goes on in government and make sure it's handled in the proper manner."

The election for mayor of Port Allen is April 5. To read the full audit, click here.

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