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Police called when housing authority boss shows up to work after being suspended over spending

8 months 1 week 11 hours ago Monday, March 28 2022 Mar 28, 2022 March 28, 2022 1:43 PM March 28, 2022 in News
Source: WBRZ

NEW ROADS - A two-year-old financial audit inquiry led to police being called to the Housing Authority in New Roads Monday amid a feud involving the agency boss, city government and what auditors found in a routine check of records.

Amid COVID lockdowns, auditors questioned the agency's spending, specifically thousand-dollar stipends given to Paula Rush, also known as Paula Battley, the agency's executive director.  Auditors questioned $4,770 in COVID expenses and $7,950 in vacation buy back charges.  

Read the entire audit here.

Rush was suspended and will eventually be fired for what commissioners of the New Roads Housing Authority called "willful and habitual" neglect of her job, specifically failure to address the audit.

Several law enforcement officers gathered at the New Roads Housing Authority around noon Monday after Rush showed up at the offices that morning. 

Rush spoke to WBRZ at her office Monday, arguing the board that handed her the termination was illegally appointed by Mayor Cornell Dukes. 

Police ultimately left the property without taking Rush into custody or charging her with anything. 

The Housing Authority is still investigating the June 2020 audit and told the WBRZ Investigative Unit Monday it was working to "address findings" and that it was too early to determine if there was any criminality uncovered.

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