Two members of the Sabine Parish Police Jury authorized $378,682 in road maintenance work in their districts without obtaining Police Jury approval or following state bid law or parish public works procedures, the Legislative Auditor said in a report released today.
The road projects were done between July 29 and September 4, 2015. The two police jurors said they decided to have the maintenance work performed outside of the parish’s normal process because the parish road manager did not respond to their requests for road repairs. The road manager said he was never told of the condition of the roads in question and did not find out about the work until it was underway.
The state auditor said the investigative audit also found that the Police Jury used public money to maintain what appear to be private driveways and roads in the parish, which is prohibited by the Louisiana Constitution and state law. An examination of parish records showed that 94 roads listed in the road department’s work tracking system did not appear on the parish’s approved road list.
The road department’s secretary said if parish employees worked on a road that was not in the department’s tracking system, she added the road to the system. However, she did not check to see if the road was on the parish’s approved road list.
In their response, Sabine Parish police jurors agreed with the audit’s findings and said they have held an educational session for the Police Jury on the laws and procedures involving public works projects. In addition, they are working on reconciling the roads in the road department’s tracking system with the parish’s approved road list to determine whether any private roads are listed. Officials also said they will work to implement the audit’s recommendations.
See here the complete audit.