LAFAYETTE — Melville is missing more than $62,000 in payments for utility services from 2012 to 2014, a number that represents roughly 12 percent of utility receipts for that period, according to a state audit released Monday.
The two employees who handle utility accounts for the small St. Landry Parish town deny taking any of the money, according to the report from the state Legislative Auditor.
As for where the cash is, Melville Mayor Willie Haynes III said the investigation has yet to locate any of it.
“It is still unknown at this time,” he said.
Haynes said the audit report will be forwarded to the St. Landry Parish District Attorney’s Office.
The mayor said the two employees still have their jobs, and the town plans to take no personnel action at this time.
“It is being handed over to the proper authorities,” Haynes said.
St. Landry Parish First Assistant District Attorney Frank Trosclair Jr. said the District Attorney’s Office is awaiting the report from state auditors before deciding whether to pursue the case.
The investigation by the state Legislative Auditor’s Office found that $537,883 in utility payments were recorded for customers from Dec. 2012 to Feb. 2014, but only $474,912 was deposited into the town’s bank account.
Auditors found the discrepancy was from $40,773 in cash payments that were recorded as being received but apparently didn’t make it to the bank and another $22,198 that was recorded as payments for which there is no record that any money was either received or deposited.
Haynes said the town has firmed up its accounting policies, improved training for employees and now requires regular reviews to compare daily utility payments with bank deposits.