Louisiana’s longtime legislative auditor leaving job March 2

February 13, 2021 GMT

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana’s longtime legislative auditor, whose nonpartisan office combs through government agencies’ financial books, will exit the position next month after nearly 11 years as one of the state’s chief watchdogs.

Daryl Purpera told lawmakers he’s leaving the job March 2 after nearly four decades in state government. He told The Advocate he’s becoming the fulltime pastor of a Baton Rouge area Baptist church where he’s been filling in since the minister left four years ago.


“I’ve decided it’s time for me to move on to other challenges, to other opportunities,” Purpera said at a meeting of the Legislative Audit Advisory Council, the committee that oversees his office.

Purpera has worked as legislative auditor since April 2010, after being chosen by lawmakers for the job. The 59-year-old certified public accountant has been employed in state government since 1985.

The auditor oversees a staff of accountants and investigators who review the books of more than 3,500 state and local government units and affiliated entities.

During his tenure, Purpera insisted that state retirement systems make more conservative presumptions in their investments, pushed for closer reviews of local government finances and toughened scrutiny of Louisiana’s Medicaid program. Republicans seized on the Medicaid reviews to criticize Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards’ decision to expand the program.

The Legislature will choose the state’s next legislative auditor, who must by law be a certified public accountant and receive approval by a majority of members in the House and Senate.