Southern University System files late annual fiscal report

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Southern University System was almost two months late filing their annual fiscal report to the Louisiana Legislative Auditor.

Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera says that the Southern University System's original deadline for filing the report was September 19th. Officials say that the report was not filed until November 17th after the System received two extensions.

Along with filing the report late, the state auditor says that the reports "contained numerous errors and omissions further delaying the completion of the System's audit."

Purpera says that they also had problems obtaining information from the Southern University System. He says that more than one-third of the audit requests took between two weeks and more than three months to be fulfilled by the System's office.

Southern University System President Ronald Mason responded to the report by saying that the problems are because the office "had a major transition in leadership and management role turnover and vacancies in key financial management positions." Mason also says technical difficulties and unplanned absences of several key employees played a role in the delay of the annual report.

The delays not only delay the report for the Southern University System but it also delays the release of the state's Comprehensive Annual Fiscal Report of all agencies.

The state auditor's office says that the university system should ensure that it has the adequate accounting personnel available for next year's Annual Fiscal Report as well as hold its staff accountable for responding to audit requests in a timely manner.

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