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LSU to monitor flight spending

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BATON ROUGE - LSU is promising to monitor the purchase of plane tickets more carefully after an Inspector General's report showed the flagship university wasted $123,000 on unused airfare over the period of two-and-half years.

The school wasn't the only state agency that was targeted in the report. The findings show state agencies wasted more than $500,000 total between July 2011 and December 2013.

LSU argues that sometimes its cheaper to book a new ticket than to try and change a previously paid-for ticket when travel plans change, but promised to force employees to pay for the tickets if travel changes aren't business related.

They also noted that travelers are informed of their trip over the period of several weeks leading up to trip, to ensure the tickets don't go to waste.

LSU said the amount wasted was only a fraction of what they normally spend in a year. Last fiscal year LSU spent more than $7 million dollars on air travel. A spokesperson for the school noted that LSU relies on it's researchers, professors, and faculty to travel across the world for studies, panels and to secure funding and talent for the school.

The university will also provide lists of all the unused tickets to department heads to ensure the tickets can be used before they expire and cut a deal with American Airlines to transfer unused tickets into travel vouchers for future use.


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