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State auditors visit parish offices

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NEW ROADS - Two investigators with the State Legislative Auditor's Office visited Pointe Coupee Parish offices today.

News 2 learned they were looking for documents that may show a lack of oversight when it comes to finances and controls. Some of the issues involve parish workers expensing meals for more than what is allowed. 

"I'm glad the legislative auditor has finally caught on, and they will do an investigation into what's going on there," Police Juror Justin Cox said.

Cox said some of the issues are highlighted on a receipt News 2 obtained. It shows the parish spending nearly $675 for a lunch on 17 employees. The parish travel policy only allows $10 for lunches.

"Clearly when you're looking at $20-$30 meals for one person, it's clearly a violation of the police jury policy," Cox said.

Other issues involve cash that was paid to workers in the parish recreation department, highlighted in a News 2 report last month.  Money was also never collected from some residents for things like water, gas and garbage bills.

Joe Hinckley has lived in the parish for 30 years, and said he supports anything that will keep the parish in compliance.

"Everyone needs to be accountable and if there's something going on that's not correct," Hinckley said. "I think they should delve into it."

Cox said that's why he's pushing for more oversight.

"We don't have that much money, and the money we do have we need to make sure we are good stewards of the public's money."

State auditors first showed up last week. It's unclear how long their investigation will take. The workers declined to comment about why they were in the parish.

Note: The video of the restaurant used in this story was News 2 file video, and not video from the police jury lunch referenced in this report.


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