Posted: Sep 28, 2010 10:40 AM
Updated: Sep 28, 2010 2:55 PM
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A legislative audit finds the former
head of the Louisiana High School Athletic Association may have
fraudulently spent thousands of dollars of association money
including as much as $50,000 on cigars.
The audit claims Tommy Henry, who served as LHSAA commissioner
from 1983 until he retired in 2007, may have improperly used an
LHSAA credit card to buy himself clothes or pay for such things as
his golf fees and equipment and cigars during the audit period of
June 2005 to October 2007.
The audit also says Henry may have bought meals with the LHSAA
credit card and then submitted some of the same charges on an
expense report seeking reimbursement during the 2005-2007 time
According to the audit, no credit card receipts were kept during
the time period, but Henry did admit to auditors that he used the
credit card to pay for some personal expenses.
During a telephone interview with The Advocate on Monday, Henry,
73, denied any wrongdoing and said that every year LHSAA was
audited by "state-approved auditors."
"For 24 years, we were audited every single year and never, not
once, was I cited for misspending or misuse of the money by the
auditors or anybody," Henry said. "Those records are open for
anyone to look at."
High school principals who are members of LHSAA also reviewed
the annual audit and never raised any issue with Henry, he said.
Dan Daigle, assistant state Legislative Auditor and director of
the Compliance Unit, said his office was asked by the Legislative
Audit Advisory Council which consists of five state senators and
five state representatives to audit Henry's spending of LHSAA's
Daigle said the audit is not a full-blown government
standards-based audit. Instead, it is a compliance and forensics
audit, he said, which is used when there are specific allegations
Kenny Henderson, LHSAA's current executive director the new
title for the commissioner's position held by Henry said LHSAA's
board has known about the questionable expenditures since June
2007, when the federal Internal Revenue Service began asking
questions and conducting its own audit.
Henderson said the board has taken no action against Henry
because the IRS has not completed its audit.
Henderson said the Legislative Audit report will be discussed at
the next LHSAA board meeting Oct. 27.