Jan 15, 2013 8:01 PM by Akeam Ashford
KATC is learning more about how money was misspent by the Parking and Transit department at U-L Lafayette two years ago. Drivers were charged $10 cash to park at special events, like Mardi Gras or Festivals Acadiens et Creole. A state audit reveals there was a misappropriation of funds within the department, totaling more than $128,000. The incident took place over a three year period.
Former Parking and Transit Director, Simon Broussard is accused of keeping about $14,000, about $10,000 went to his assistant, and the rest of the cash went to workers manning the gates. Broussard committed suicide the day after he was fired from UL. U-L disputes those figures saying employees should have been paid for working, but they were only overpaid by $29,000. Some of that money has been recouped. "University is no longer taking cash for parking, only debit, credit cards, or the Cajun Card which is the UL ID that students, faculty, and staff can put money and use it as a type of currency," Police Chief Joey Sturm said. The department currently has a full-time staff of parking enforcement officers who are all trained to work a garage, paid parking lot, or special event.
The police chief says there's been some resistance to the no cash policy, but overall it's been positive. He says it will take a little getting use to, but he is confident the new payment system will allow for better accountability of university funds.
Parking fees for special events have not increased, but everyday parking on campus is up a quarter an hour to help with credit card processing fees.
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