BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - LSU “improperly compensated” a faculty member more than $400,000 in salary and benefits over a nearly three-year period despite the fact he later admitted he did not perform work for the university during that time, according to a new state audit.
“The faculty member knowingly received 38 months of LSU salary and benefits without performing commensurate work,” auditors said in a report issued Monday by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor.
Auditors say management at the School of Veterinary Medicine did not take “sufficient action to address the faculty member’s lack of performance.”LSU’s own internal auditors interviewed the faculty member, Fang-Ting Liang, and told state auditors he acknowledged he did not deserve to be paid.
In its management response included in the state audit, LSU says the faculty member’s supervisor was removed as chair of the Department of Pathobiological Services and was replaced by an interim chair as result of the incident.
LSU says it has “initiated disciplinary action” against Liang and pointed to its policy that permits LSU to dismiss faculty members ‘with cause’.
Because that can be a lengthy process, LSU told auditors disciplinary action against Liang, whatever that might be, may not be complete until September 2019.
“LSU employees are held to the highest standards, and these actions do not represent our mission and values,” LSU said in a statement to WAFB-TV Monday.
“These findings show poor management and an egregious abuse of the public trust citizens place in us. We do not take this lightly, and citizens can be assured that LSU is taking swift action while adhering to due process. The School of Veterinary Medicine has inserted safeguards to ensure nothing like this will occur again.”