Parish Officer in Louisiana Placed on Paid Leave Due to Insurance Ties

December 18, 2009

Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, President Aaron Broussard has placed his embattled top aide, Tim Whitmer, on paid leave.

Broussard told The Times-Picayune he placed Whitmer on leave pending an investigation into newly disclosed deals between Whitmer’s insurance brokerage and parish contractors.

The U.S. attorney’s office in November sent subpoenas to Broussard’s administration and the Parish Council clerk’s office for records of an employee insurance contract at the publicly owned West Jefferson Medical Center, Broussard and Councilman John Young confirmed.

Whitmer at that time announced his intention to leave his post Feb. 1.

The Times-Picayune has reported that Whitmer’s business, Lagniappe Industries, handles health insurance for River Birch Inc., which landed a $6.4 million-a-year garbage disposal contract overseen by Whitmer.

Broussard also cited a WVUE-TV inquiry into a Lagniappe contract with Sizeler Architects, part of the design team for the parish emergency center being built in Gretna.

Parish Councilman John Young called the paid leave “too little, too late.”

Young said Broussard should terminate Whitmer immediately.

Information from: The Times-Picayune,

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