Think your small-town school district is immune from the taxpayer fraud and abuse seen in the state’s largest districts? Luling residents have learned otherwise. Their local superintendent was put on administrative leave last week after reports of financial mismanagement, including abuses of district credit cards.
Luling ISD superintendent David Davis was placed on administrative leave by the district’s board of trustees when local resident Mike Cronkle filed an official audit complaint. The complaint prompted another audit by the Texas Education Agency, of which the trustee’s reviewed before making their decision.
The TEA audit was not made available at the time, but Cronkle told the Gonzales Cannon his complaint of Davis revolved around the following abuses:
- misuse of a district credit card
- reimbursement for meals and mileage in excess of district limits
- use of district funds to pay expenses of a non-district employee
- “general lack of accountability”
(Note: the board has not yet offered an official reason for placing Davis on administrative leave.)
We typically hear about this type of taxpayer fraud in some of the state’s larger school districts (such as Dallas ISD), given the large media markets they sit in. But rarely do these “small-town” reports make it any further than the county newspaper, potentially giving rural Texans a false sense-of-security that their local school districts aren’t susceptible to the same types of abuse.
It’s critical that we all stay vigilant in our pursuit to keep our public officials accountable to the taxpayers. As this latest report shows, abuse of tax dollars can happen anywhere.
Dustin Matocha is the Social Media Coordinator of Empower Texans / Texans for Fiscal Responsibility.
Connect with Dustin on Twitter.