Shreveport councilman asks state to investigate city’s finance division | News

SHREVEPORT, La. – A Shreveport town council member, who questioned the condition auditor to conduct an investigative audit of the city’s Finance Office, has been eradicated from his function as chairman of the council’s Audit and Finance Committee.

John Nickelson built the request Thursday morning to Legislative Auditor Michael J. Waguespack. 

About 30 minutes later on, Nickelson was stripped of his committee chairmanship by new council Chairman James Environmentally friendly. Nickelson held the title for three decades. 

In a social media submit, Nickelson mentioned, “I adore Shreveport. I’ve provided my constituents and our town 110 p.c since I was elected in 2018. But loving Shreveport is just not adequate. We all have to struggle for Shreveport – and we have to do every little thing in our electric power to make sure eight intelligent, proficient, trustworthy people today are elected to guide the metropolis in the fall 2022 elections. Our potential depends on it.”

The request to Waguespack will come three days following the city’s former controller alleged probable illegalities in the city’s funds and accounting. Ben Hebert, 85, said he was fired in December just after he brought all those problems to the attention of his supervisors, which include Kasey Brown, who is the interim main monetary officer. 

Related REPORT: Former Shreveport controller alleges ‘financial improprieties’ by town officials

Hebert alleges age and racial discrimination in his dismissal and claimed he programs to file go well with by week’s end. 

In his letter, Nickelson cited Hebert’s termination. 

“Very last thirty day period, the city’s interim chief economic officer unceremoniously fired the city’s controller, Ben Hebert, with no see to all council users. Mr. Hebert, a licensed community accountant and a licensed fraud examiner, has made a wide range of allegations about incompetence and malfeasance in the Finance Section. These allegations from a former member of the city’s management group are significant and phone into question the department’s capacity to administer community money. They need a full, honest and transparent investigation that only your office can give.”

Nickelson bundled with his letter the statement Hebert created Monday throughout a information meeting. 

Some of the allegations from Hebert and his attorney, Allison Jones, includes: 

  • The city fails to stick to recognized accounting tactics.
  • The town unsuccessful to meet IRS and state income time constraints.
  • The metropolis normally did not pay out its credit cards on time.

He also raised queries about Mayor Adrian Perkins’ travels. Hebert stated some of the cost reviews do not include things like itemized receipts for expenses, small or no description of the reason or gains derived for the metropolis from the vacation and other irregularities. 

Hebert claims he refused to take part in what he felt had been violations of condition regulation. He believes he was also handed above for a marketing mainly because of his age and his race.

Jones suggests she will be submitting grievances with the EEOC and the Louisiana Commission on Human Rights.

In response to Nickelson’s connect with for a point out auditor probe, Adrian Perkins mentioned in a created assertion, “The Town of Shreveport undergoes an internal and external audit annually. If the State has the assets to conduct an more audit, we welcome it. I’m always seeking at means for our Finance Section to be more robust.”

The metropolis stated simply because of pending litigation it could not comment on Hebert’s allegations.