Posted: Aug 25, 2010 6:23 PM by Shawn Kline
Updated: Aug 25, 2010 6:24 PM
New details out of the Lafayette Housing Authority scandal
but these details may lead to more questions than answers.
The questions surround the hiring process; at least one of the applicants who was hired, a convicted felon.
Parish President Joey Durel browsed through more than 10-pages of criminal documents surrounding the employee.
"Forgery?" Durel asked in astonishment, "how in the world does this happen?"
Earlier in August, Durel booted every Housing Authority board member but one... A Donald Fuselier.
The decision came after an audit showed severe problems- especially with the disaster assistance program where seven agents somehow gained a $26 pay raise.
Those agents included Chris Williams and a Beatrice Wilson- also known as Porsha Evans.
"It would raise a flag when you have these charges; forged checks," Fuselier said. "It's frightening."
Investigators say Wilson- or Evans'- record includes multiple felonies stemming back to the early 1990's... including forged checks in Baton Rouge and a simple battery charge in 1998 which landed her in jail.
Yet, the application was overlooked... her criminal background, never checked.
Wilson... Or Porsha Evans was hired for the disaster assistance program in August of 2008 anyways.
"Unfortunately, there are people who are a little slicker than (us)." Fuselier said, "basically we get played."
All those hired by the Disaster Assistance Program were brought on-board by Housing Authority Executive Director, Walter Guillory.
While Guillory says he's responsible, Fuselier says as long as Guillory continues to cooperate, he will keep his job as Executive Director. At least, until federal and state auditors complete their investigation.
Parish President Joey Durel says he is left wondering who exactly is in charge of the Housing Authority...
It's funded by federal tax dollars and overseen by the Department of Housing and Urban Development...
Yet, Durel says he has the power to choose its board members and HUD representatives haven't been to Lafayette since the audit was released....
"There's a layer of management missing here," Durel said. "Lafayette Consolidated Government should have an ability, considering that HUD is so far away, we should have an ability to go in there in a bad situation and get some new management."
Durel added he expects to have a new board picked as early as the end of this week.