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Parish workers: "Every dollar can be accounted for"

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NEW ROADS - A group of employees for Pointe Coupee Parish spent the day trying to set the record straight after a story by the News 2 Investigative Unit Tuesday about how the parish recreation department paid people.

They wanted to make two things very clear: every dollar that was issued to the Recreation Department can be accounted for, and there is no wrongdoing.

Police Juror Dewey Dukes raised questions about how the parish has been paying umpires and referees for recreational games. Currently, a check is issued by the Parish Treasurer to Assistant Recreation Director Erica Jarreau. Jarreau cashes the check and helps distribute the cash.

However, exact records of who received the cash are not kept. That caused the police jury to change procedures last night.

"None of us have anything to hide," Recreation Director Sal Genusa said. "There's no wrongdoing."

Today Genusa and Jarreau produced a file folder with documents two inches thick showing the money used to pay for referees and umpires at games.

On Tuesday, Dukes called the current payment plan "a recipe to steal."

"To say that it's a recipe for stealing, he's directly implicating or implying the three employees of the jury, Ms. Mayeux, Ms. Jarreau and Mr. Genusa were criminally acting and trying to steal money," Attorney Cy D'Aquilla said. "It's absolutely not true."

"He (Dukes) clearly made allegations to lead the public to feel someone in the recreation department or treasury department for Pointe Coupee Parish Police Jury has done something criminally wrong," Genusa said.

Assistant Director of Recreation, Erica Jarreau said she can account for every dollar for the checks that were issued to her.

"I've got documents of every check cut to me, the amount, what it goes to, where it goes and it's not going in my pocket," Jarreau said.

Jarreau said the only reason cash was issued to the umpires is because that's the way it has been done for nearly 20 years. Following changes implemented last night, no one will get paid in cash.

"They will tell me who the official is, how much they will be paid so I can 1099 them at the end of the year," Treasurer Rebecca Meyeux said.

News 2 has learned the umpires and referees who made less than $600 don't have to claim it on their taxes. As for those who made more, they won't be taxed because names were not kept as part of the old records.


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