NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - A new report released Thursday morning by the New Orleans Inspector General’s Office says the Sewerage and Water Board was not properly audited between 2016 and 2018.
The mayor’s office has responded to the report saying many of the things listed in the report are already being handled.
The report goes into great detail about the S&WB’s Internal Audit Department and says they were mostly ineffective at holding other branches accountable because they were specifically told what they could and could not investigate.
The OIG’s report also states that the S&WB failed to hire a Chief Audit Executive and that other members of the audit department answered to the former executive director which at the time of the inspector general’s investigation would have been Cedric Grant.
One memo is provided in the report and was sent to the audit department in 2017.
It reads, “Please discontinue any work on this or other similar reports and only take on what I have specifically authorized.”
The name on the memo was redacted but was sent from the executive director’s office.
The Inspector General’s Office says the audit committee’s lack of governance over the department allowed S&WB management to interfere with the department’s operations.
Recently, Mayor Latoya Cantrell and the governor’s office announced they would be appointing a new advisory board to oversee how incoming money will be spent in the department.
The mayor’s office also released a lengthy statement saying that many of the issues listed in the report happened before Executive Director Ghassan Korban took over and that issues are already being fixed such as finding a chief audit executive and changing who the audit committee answers to.