Audit: EBR COA Used Public Funds To Campaign For Tax Increase

(WBRZ News 2) The East Baton Rouge Council on Aging used public resources, including money, staff time and nonprofit postage permit to support a tax proposition in 2016, according to a state audit released Monday.

According to Louisiana’s Legislative Auditor, the COA management ran Support our Seniors, a political action committee, from February to December 2016. The PAC’s goal: to push for voter support of a tax to increase the council’s funding.

Auditors report that the EBR COA donated $24,830 from ad sales and sponsorships and used $6,523 in public money to pay for SOS’s expenses. The majority of those expenses were paid on the council’s credit card and reimbursed after the election.

Auditors identified another $9,132 in expenses apparently paid on SOS's behalf which was not reimbursed.

“Both the Louisiana Constitution and state law prohibit the use of public funds to encourage citizens to vote for or against a candidate or proposition,” Daryl G. Purpera said. “Federal treasury regulations also prohibit tax-exempt organizations from participating in political activities.”

Baton Rouge Business Report / Daily Report
Read the audit

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