State auditor to examine how New Orleans City Council members use city-issued credit cards

NEW ORLEANS-  The Louisiana State Legislative Auditor, Daryl G. Purpera,  is looking into how New Orleans City Council Members are using taxpayer-funded credit cards.

The Auditor's office confirmed that he has sent a letter to Mayor Mitch Landrieu's office regarding improper usage of city credit cards by City Council members, including mayoral candidate Councilwoman Latoya Cantrell. The letter also goes on to request an explanation of the city's policy regarding credit card use.

The auditor’s letter asks for a list of credit cards assigned to council members over the past four years, as well as monthly statements, ledger records showing all transactions, detailed receipt and reimbursement paperwork and internal investigations. He also asked for city policies and agreements when it comes to credit card use. The auditor wants the information by November 17th.

This comes after recent reports allege that Councilwoman Cantrell supposedly used her credit card to cover expenses she later repaid. I The City Council’s chief of staff, David Gavlinski, said the city’s card policy requires the city to use it for legitimate city business. He had no further comment.

Cantrell responded to the accusations in a recent interview with News with a Twist, as well as a prepared statement:

“[It's] unfair. It’s really just attacking my credibility, my integrity and my work that I have been able to deliver in the city of New Orleans ... I've shown myself to be transparent, and I will certainly send any requested records to the legislative auditor."

The runoff election between Cantrell and Desiree Charbonnet is Saturday, November 18.