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WWL>Topics>>2-14-14 10:10am Don Dubuc: on St. Tammany Parish

2-14-14 10:10am Don Dubuc: on St. Tammany Parish

Feb 14, 2014|

Don Dubuc fills in for Garland and talks with Sandra Slifer of the League of Women Voters in St. Tammany about why the parish voted not to hire an inspector general.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

And on Fridays as the Friday edition of the think tank with me done to you filling in for Garland Robinette Golan will be back with you on Monday. Happy Valentine's Day blog at some nice weather just in time for going out and about this weekend for some nice activity. -- really a surprise yesterday Valentine's surprised. Until my WW LTV fishing game report. I caught a red fish with a marked. One of the adoption of the dots on the -- issues around the -- but they can show up anywhere caught one with a perfect heart shape on it. It showed on camera if you didn't see it. They'll take a look at it it's on now my web page -- Don the outdoors guy dot com. In go to -- -- fishing game reports TV reports and check it out you'll see it right there. And of course didn't have the heart to. Keep the red fish with the heart. That when is still swimming and I -- think it's a female trees and anyway you if you catch it. Remember it was mine forest take a look at really a surprise and -- had a great trip will have sufficient import -- -- will be later on for you. But lots of business to take care of this has also been a very busy week in the courts and in the media and none no exception today we had to juggle our guest lineup around a little bit saint Tammany parish president pat -- Normally joins us on the last stuff Friday of each month to comic gold with things in saint Tammany. Is going to be making a special appearance whether she have a conflict come up -- planet were on earlier. We will not have bar on told the new and now but which he will be talking about is a couple of issues saint Tammany parish corner. Peter Galvin the united sentencing will talk about that and also on the decision for saint Tammany passion not to pursue. In -- general. Those two things I think did not get near the attention they would have. In the media and among the public and had been overshadowed by the Canadian drop. That kind of put everything account on the bag and while we're gonna bring about talk about it over the next few hours. Also in the 11 o'clock -- Tim Nash an attorney -- legal analyst. Is gonna join -- to talk about the verdict the sentencing the appeal process. In some specifics. He was there and won a few in his state was on how the trial was handed. And also -- some rumors circulating about what I'm gonna call the Nagin appeals gambit. And we'll see if there's anything to that anyway will invite you to call in and text in. You can Texas and 87870. Please remember the text responsibly. We do not like you that text and drive have a designated driver award designated text. And I phone lines are open for -- to those of you who live and work in saint Tammany. 260. 187 new or hole 3866. 8890. Point seven you know thanks Sandra -- of the present League of Women Voters the saint Tammany. -- partition. Also the president of the League of Women Voters. Who's made some special adjustments in schedules morning to be able to join us to talk about the agency from where she says she's got a very good perspective. She was actually the secretary as well as a member of the task force that was selected. To determine whether we would pursue an inspector general position in saint Tammany parish and she joins us now and a thanks so much taken to on the meatless. Thank you for asking me to get on the Erie times. It's always great to have you -- if you would I always liked the -- there's no. From whence our guests come tell us about the League of Women Voters in saint Tammany parish and the Louisiana league though you guys and in what you all about. They had -- the lead in. -- and four year old organization that we were. Created. After women -- the right to vote in 1920 done -- that we are. We do not support for -- has. Any candidate who wore our priorities. That we are political organization. Will be. They'll provide voter education. You know for instance. With the coroner. Rate that's coming opt out the -- -- elections. That that we -- and make sure that voters. Are as informed as possible about the decisions that we they -- we -- take positions on issues though. You know and that -- first studied the issue and become the consensus. Ian. We didn't speak with one voice. When it comes to that determination. These local league are concerned with issues that -- -- in the local community. The state -- do. We hope they're gearing up the year -- -- legislative session that begins in March oh we are the kind of a busy tightly here for a. Erica it and just suffice to say you're in the interest of of good government and providing information and education to constituents and voters. But at the same time also taking a stance on things that you feel is in the best interest of of good government great. Right now let's get to this issue of the that the inspector general if it is call your organization strongly supportive not some. Only support but I believe you. I actually came up with the whole idea of inspector general for saint Tammany parish and in light of what we've seen happen in the command of the mayor of any price and you know now Peter Galvin the corner and neighboring parishes with Ray Nagin and bill Jefferson and Broussard and Jim Angle I mean it just seems like you know we're losing trust. In our elected officials and we need to keep a little closer -- on and so tell me about the history. Of these search in the news and we'll get into the decision later about the inspector general has thanked them. Brand New Orleans. -- moved. In the air off the sub inspector general. In 20062007. Timeframe. That yelled. The lead here at saint Tammany. Became very interested in the subject you know that we had seen some corruption in the over the years here in saint Tammany that if you go they act. -- -- 101520. Years -- that we can have a theory but elected officials. Order. Administrators. Who -- album. Then convicted of crying yep public corruption. And -- -- they had you're pretty. Yes we're in touch with our the first inspector general in in New Orleans. But they are solely we haven't come out to speak we had numerous meetings with the we've started doing research and the Office of Inspector General. -- From at a national level as well as. Those states in communities that he had. Created these officers. And we found that there was no shortage of work again to -- with the communities. Where they were. Hired. To to do the job of being the public watchdog. And that in 2007. We started out -- Every candidate to -- opposition. You know to answer in writing what your position laws regarding an office of inspector generals Wear pink -- peerage. And that we were doing education at this thing trying. Don't providing links to. Different web site media and yeah ideally informational. One with. First but they're fully of course and then add Matra. They're just trying to get the public informed about what. One inspector general god in what they don't do any and then of course last year there was. Senator. -- -- Just stopped filing legislation. You know that -- -- not done. Yelling consultation with a lead -- we were surprised when he read the local bill ever typed in the firmer hand job. You know that. That ended up not happening. But as a result of that. Local LB. Average height and if god that the camp Portland created. Now the task force which created to do exactly what and who comprised it. The -- worked would. Set up to. Make a recommendation. Two and to do what Scotty in terms of the feasibility. Of creating an Office of Inspector General. Is saint Tammany parish that the legislature. The resolution that was paid out to. Where does the determining factor in terms of who we have a seat. On the helped thwart. You know it was comprised. Representatives from the municipalities. In Saint Anthony -- ya -- parish government. It. Sub role. Non profit organizations. The where business associations. Of these. These and that chambers -- has represented from the iron the tale worth. The concerned citizens of saint Tammany had two members on the field force. The odds were short of that council had to -- at the table. -- did the League of Women Voters. OK so -- it as well as dumb as I should say also this year without her declared war. On in the school board so -- out yeah we it was. They were not happy. And there -- People that were represented in government entities. We'll talk -- -- send us live for the present League of Women Voters saint Tammany parish and as Sandra I don't think anybody at all had a problem with you gore won the representatives from. Your association all concerned citizens are on the non profits. But I've heard a lot of people who said wait a minute a lot of these people the ones at the inspector general would be watching in them make and determination. Of whether we need one that was out of the broader. That it would discuss. Privately. You get that we didn't. It was not or we didn't have control over who was going to be on the -- -- -- that you know it in my eyes virtually all of the people who are representing government entities where it. Exactly does -- Entities others yelled who would be out. Banned under Europe via the inspector general -- had oversight over. So that I mean the coast INS -- none of the -- going to make him house that you. That we didn't. In my opinion that. Government governmental and he's certainly. Yeah they needed have a seat at the table but should would have been different if the the makeup of the task force was. Perhaps even more evenly. Represented by eight. Citizens then by a nonprofit organizations. Have appended to it. The majority of the camp where members be competitive and govern. And I thought I think the pub out of out of the public probably would have had. You know better. Felt more comfortable with that type of Jamaica -- we got to take a break and we come back and likely to get into the discussion of what went on when the test was disgusted. The feasibility of putting an inspector general in saint Tammany parish guest is Sandra -- Presently the women voters in saint Tammany parish and are pretty opinion poll question four do you think the decision to forgo a saint Tammany parish inspector general. Good idea or bad -- check it out into the WB. Right. And for several years now saint Tammany -- is considered the idea of instituting an inspector general offices many other parishes have done a preemptive strike to having them which would avoid having to go to crawls and bringing. Elected officials and other government personnel to to -- four. -- wrongdoings. Keep basically a system of checks and balances. A task force was appointed. To make determination on the determination of whether it is feasible for AIG. In saint Tammany parish in they have chosen the task force on not to do so we're talking Sandra slifer. Who had an inside seat on that she's the president League of Women Voters of saint Tammany she was also acting as a secretary for the task force we've found out that the task force was comprised. Mainly of elected officials representatives of cities and municipalities in the parish people who would actually come on the direct scrutiny of an inspector general. There were some non profit from the League of Women Voters and also concerned citizens of saint Tammany. And we're trying to make sense of why this thing failed apparent parish president pat Bristow who. Does the program with me each month on a on a regular basis has been in support of this all along. I've agreed with that I don't think you can go wrong with that too much scrutiny on elected officials. But for some reason saint Tammany parish is chosen not to do them whether that's a an economic reason know whether saint Tammany has different circumstances -- other parishes I don't know but right now there's. Eight the 6% of you actually 88% saying it was a bad idea. The saint Tammany parish not to put an inspector general in only 13%. Saying he was a good idea and it's always interesting to watch as we didn't discussions and information on -- how these polls can either remain the same. Or change it will keep an eye on that Sandra we're right up against the new solar. Can you stay we'll -- -- the news break because they're really wanna give in to the actual discussions of what was. I'm brought up pros and cons of the inspector general position absolutely. Very good we'll stay with a -- will be back to continue that conversation and then. In the 12 o'clock hour at Bristol was in a meeting this morning and change a schedule she's going to be with -- in Alaska so these same questions Vickers. She was strongly in support it and when you've got an elected a fish you lose and strongly support of putting a watchdog on Indian. To keep tabs on them all that kind of -- is something about them and then you kind of wonder are the ones that are opposed to a wall why would they both -- If they're good guys in there and abiding by the rules and acting as -- public servants and not acting in their own interest as we have seen in so many of these cases. Why would their objective will delve into that the Sandra -- of president League of Women Voters and we'll open up telephones and that you call -- If you get a texting your message remember it's 877. But please take responsibly will be Iraq after the news. -- saint Tammany parish task force that was a pointed and charged with that determining the feasibility of an inspector general for the paris' chosen not to do so. Right now on our WW all dot com ready opinion poll question 73% of you think that was the wrong decision it was a bad idea. 27%. Say it was a good idea in order to help you. Justify your opinion we have the president of the League of Women Voters the saint Tammany parish Sandra -- who was privy. To the discussion going on there and a determination not to go forward with the inspector general. Sandra if you would it take us back to the median explained to his son who brought up the pros and who brought up the cons and how the vote came down. And line out the first the ball that all we're doing is making a recommendation to the legislature done. So we don't yet know what the legislature is going to do. With that recommendation. Yet that will bring camp to. They engaged in hand to watch the legislature. I talk with the legislators. Yell all over the states you know who will actually. Be making. These definitions. As to what he opened. Well what was I don't fish aren't recommendation going forward to the legislature. The official recommendation. Three proposals that we were able to -- -- at the meeting earlier this week the united. -- the one of the recommendations received no votes switched. Well what am pretty. Recommended that the legislature create an inspector general that would follow. Here range dollars people who need the data from Miami taking. Yeah I appear touched the money and and easier use that money spent money toward that money to other entities. Deputy inspector general was followed those dollars that with a recommendation that the need to know by the end of the task force members. That there was. The other two. Recommendations. You know that was twelve to -- with two spoiled ballots that were chaos. He and they had their recommendation that received twelve votes. -- To create. Two to him the legislative auditor. But don't create. I did back against them but we -- there would be enhanced audit. Four. All of the governmental entities. That were under the purview of the legislative auditor that virtually all of the entities. It would appear in there are. So many of them how -- ninety's. -- entities you know that but it's just the sheer number of entities. That are receiving. The public dollar and -- -- I think that the league fines. Daunting. Media and -- is is giving up. How Hartford and yeah great concern. But they -- the proposal that did receive twelve vote. Basically the it would be. The legislative auditor will -- Determine. What particular theory. Any effort -- -- government agencies. Would receive that he. Oversight we have to -- perhaps it would be credit card charge you travel charger. Delhi it it would vary depending upon the agency. -- wouldn't make any sense to look at travel budgets for agencies that get very little. OK I understand that philosophy but how would this come to the attention. Of the legislative -- would that would there be a routine. Inspection that would ban random pick some of these and entities to to conduct these -- on what would stimulate the -- under this program. That me exactly what the proposal. And again it's that simple recommendation or a proposal. And -- outlined. Initially by. Two attorneys. And the -- board. Cherie yeah he and Neill Paul. That theory here and -- represented district turning the united Neill Paul was represented appears helpful. Yeah and it helped force the united. That the -- propellant. That. -- oversight through the legislative auditors office. In October November trying -- The concept is bad. Every entity would hear some level. Enhance oversight. That. You know perhaps the -- -- time of the year total budget in terms of how much. Additional oversight they would -- and they would have to hire me. AD. Or -- auditing firm that would. Got in a year and some people are calling -- and that style audit. Yeah out dead. Dubbed it would be any war in GAAP. -- A particular. Here. Subject to the chatter that was chosen by the legislative auditors. And the meaning it would be bay -- -- the V. Perhaps the regular. Audit and compliance audit debt every entity -- to turn into the legislative auditors on an annual pace the. So basically there's number two choice that they went -- with. A kind of turns it over to Louisiana legislation that ought to legislative all right kind of pretty much as I you mention it was a third when what was the other. Third option on -- appearance. Dubbed it the year questioned whether or -- he. Yeah the third option but the constitutional amendment. That bloody. He had to a bank borrowed it and by two thirds of the house the senate and then. It would have. Appeared on the ballot. Yeah there are what it would that the November ballot that -- so what you're trying to to draft those. Constitutional amendment you'll -- -- the outline which we're. Which is today. I believe. In terms of average -- Constitutional amendments that. It would have. We had to paying out. Statewide of volatility Tammany parish and they would have. -- It would have created an Office of Inspector General that had authority over ball. Governmental. Entities. In eight Yemeni -- that would anybody received public dollars so that would include. Yes but nonprofits. That receive public dollars. The school board. The after their share to be a clerk of court yet. All the municipalities. Dad. Yet it. And that -- the frequency that there were some questions about the food that. It all yet as. How many trains on it hinged on the definition of key word. And that word is off sapped any -- CT. He has bad. The what was put forth by the attorneys -- that the constitution prohibit. Parish government from a acting the operations. On school board and municipalities. -- and wouldn't that create an independent agency it would not be government to. Doing it means they got to get out this idea that you create an IG has controlled by government. -- our process that's controlled by government they got to give that up at San dugout and I got to take a break -- will be right back after this time out with darkness and -- I'm trying to get to the bottom of this decision not to forgo an inspector general in saint Tammany parish. In favor of forensic auditing and state control and giving government have to affect the money that's given to the agency so we'll be right back to try to -- about this is the think tank -- -- -- -- -- those of you wanted to rest of that fish -- game report his -- suggestions what I did yesterday you can watch it on the video -- -- on the out those guys that come -- went -- to some shallow -- off the shelf. Off the inner coastal waterway final shallow ponds and talk and twelve to eighteen inches of water. Get a shallow draft bulb go and when you start seeing what we call fish clouds with a mud so when the fish do away. Drop down your ankle or your foul pole and start throwing in debates. Soft plastics on Jake heads once you can bring along some did shrimp under -- -- and believe me you'll find them in the most of the schools are staying put. And you content show -- in about probably an hour we caught probably about thirty of them all real nice sized red -- With the water warming up though you may wanna look for some speckled -- to an annex Michigan -- -- to you -- into that. Right now though we are discussing the saint Tammany parish decision I -- test with decision. To go full with a recommendation that they not. Pursue creating the office of an inspector general not going with an option to go through constitutional amendment of -- a voter vote. A ballot in 2015. For fear that the position created because of semantics may or may not have any power instead what they did they voted twelve to eight to create what is called a series of forensic audits which would be triggered by the state legislative water. I think is just kind of handing the ball off to the state on -- and now whether or not they gonna have the time. To go through these these these budgets in the transactions that take place in government and then who's gonna -- this ought to -- that's gonna specifically. Go after them I don't know I'm disappointed I think a lot of the listeners are. 78%. Right now saying it was a bad idea not to go forward with recommending his position of -- IG. 22% say good idea -- -- has been kind enough to explain to us what was going on in the -- three options that they were chosen there. I don't know what else to say send rather than you know was there any economics discussed was -- just not economically feasible because the premises. The money that you saved from being stolen in in abused would more than pay for the creation of the office in the operation. Every -- talked with and we had a number of speakers that came hand in hand. Presented information to the task force. But overwhelmingly. -- he added that in inspector general would lose wars and paid for itself. Not much is that they don't get out please fraud and abuse but also when he Chia pet. A lot of times what an inspector general patented. Keeps key governmental entities from spending our dollars on old. Unwise Shiller yeah that's just yeah it's more like an efficiency expert as well as someone searching for criminal activity. Absolutely. -- dead dead you know the amount of money that is saying he didn't always. Much more than the amount of money that. Is uncovered. -- -- Fraud is this issue Obama or it can this revisited and how would that go about it that. The voters and constituents of saint Tammany -- -- an unhappy with this it -- -- we want some other options what would. Is that gonna happen. I yes absolutely it was going to happen there a couple of different things that could trigger. Some additional caption one of them is. Are three that you want government to see what the legislature. They could look at our report now accepted and do not say. Yeah absolutely nothing that. You know it dead dad. Would be probably the worst possible outcome. Is to do nothing the second thing that we're going to be watching is that -- -- but the pain in New Orleans. Between the school board -- the New Orleans Office of Inspector General that had to do with that word -- back. -- and that we are going to. Be watching. The decision that is made by the Supreme Court very carefully stepping up the Supreme Court come down there. Don't -- about the clear definition. -- -- the word affect means he had. Having an inspector general. We -- -- you war broke -- talk to your employees. And issue -- report. Doesn't that that you are the operation of your office. That an inspector general generally does not. Criminally prosecute people date on copper. Information. Issue reports and then turn that information over is there it's criminal. Want -- to call their entities. So you know this definition is going to get a lot of player and he. And the third thing here. That at some point in time we have to question why in the world. Do. Are are the voters in. Any parish. Not able to create an office of inspector absolutely that's the only way to the legislature -- Is there something in our current constitution which was. Drafted it and early seventies. -- -- billion. Officers sub inspector general won't -- -- just didn't -- -- with a thoughtful apple. Center -- we're out of time will have to take this supplement its nominal I would like to reserve the right to get you back on discussed his Mormon I would say for now. People need to talk to their individual legislate -- is let their feelings you heard talk -- the parish president. And see if those on canal another path can be taken -- -- thank you three times and really. -- a -- presently. Intend to win and we'll be right back to can you think tank have to -- Those of you calling and texting on the -- IG issue will recover them -- 12 o'clock coming up next immeasurable talk about -- Nagin drop.