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King Alexander's LaHIT Scheme At LSU Is Unraveling

Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera has a busy office, filing 66 reports in just the past three weeks. Yesterday he announced that he had reopened the audit process in regard to one of them.

We are asking the quite capable Representative Julie Stokes, who chairs the oversight committee for the Legislative Auditor and Daryl Purpera to ask some very tough questions in regard to why so much was left out of the initial report on the LaHIT scandal which now includes LSU Board member relationships to a for profit company granted the rights to LSU property and about discrepancies in the new report just posted. Since it is far beyond time to stop the endless scandal at LSU our team has compiled these questions that we are presenting publicly and that must be answered.

1. Why was the audit "re-issued" on July 18 with no reference to the fact that this audit was originally issued June 6? Why is there no notation as to what was changed or why a re-issue was necessary? This change also is not noted in the formal transmittal letter to the Legislature, which is now dated July 18 as though that were the first and only legislative audit report on this LaHIT matter.

2. Why has the original June 6 version of the LaHIT audit been completely removed from the website listing of Auditor reports?

3. Why was Frank Opelka's response not included in the first LaHIT Auditor report issued June 6?

4. Based upon the dates of the three responses now included (Opelka on 4/6/19, Wilbright on 4/15/19, and King Alexander on 4/24/19) it is clear that the first audit draft was sent prior to April 6, 2019 to those named in it for their comments. Why did it take the Auditor an additional two months, until June 6, 2019, to issue the original final audit?

5. In addition to the extensive two month review period mentioned in #4 above, why was the LaHIT audit first issued on Thursday, June 6, the last day of the legislative session, rather than with a weekly batch of reports on the Auditor's usual Wednesday report release schedule?

6. Who is the "New Orleans businessman" discussed by Frank Opelka, and why was any mention of this person removed from the final audit report as released on both June 6 and July 18? It is apparent from Opelka's comments that multiple parties sought this "New Orleans Businessman's" service on a board related to this deal. It is also apparent from Opelka's response that the draft audit report identified an audit finding related to this "New Orleans Businessman's" participation in this arrangement. What were this person's roles in LaHIT and the for profit HarmonIQ, what were the original audit findings regarding him, and why was any discussion of his particpation or finding related to his participation removed from the final LaHIT audit report as issued by the Auditor? Put Louisiana First has now discovered the identity of this "New Orleans Businessman".

7. Why did the Auditor not review any potential conflicts of interest of LSU board members in this LaHIT matter? In a WAFB news report of August 14, 2018, information was presented indicating that there was potential involvement of several LSU board members with LaHIT. Why did the Auditor not investigate this aspect of this arrangement for potential conflicts of interest, ethics violations, fraud, or criminal misappropriation of funds?

8. Why doesn't the Auditor identify the specific people referred to as "LSU Management" in the audit report when the Auditor finds multiple instances of failure to follow rules and procedures? Why are we not told who was involved in and responsible for the various aspects of the improper acts that led to audit findings.

9. Why do the Auditor's recommendations NOT directly reflect and align with the findings in each section? The Auditor makes very specific findings of failure by "LSU Management" in nearly each section, but then makes only generic and non-specific recommendations to "review policy" in nearly each section.

Richard Lipsey
Put Louisiana First

Paid for by Put Louisiana First. Put Louisiana First is organized under the provisions of IRS 501(c)4 to operate for community welfare. Not authorized by any candidate or committee.
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