In our most recent Sound Off Louisiana feature, we outlined LPB President and CEO Beth Courtney as another example of state agency prima donna personalities who operate with reckless disregard for ethics and laws, with their ensuing irresponsibility costing Louisiana taxpayers hundreds of thousands (and in some instances, such as Murphy Painter, literally millions) of dollars in legal defense costs when justifiable lawsuits are filed by victims of these governmental “leaders” run amok.
Today we examine yet another such prima donna: Ms. Deborah Steinmetz, Chairperson of the Louisiana State Interior Design Board (IDB). In the following video, Rev. Freddie Lee Phillips, who has steadfastly hounded Steinmetz and IDB Vice Chairman T. L. Ritchie about IDB payroll fraud, expresses his frustration that an item he sought on the February 16, 2017 IDB agenda (requiring IDB Executive Assistant Sandy Edmonds to actually report to the office for some meaningful number of hours to justify her salary) was being denied. He was especially frustrated at the means the Board chose to communicate that denial to him:
Phillips sought to have his agenda request discussed by the Board, but instead he was served with this
one-page UNSIGNED certified letter immediately before the meeting indicating that his request had been denied.
As is obvious, Steinmetz has her lieutenants, Sandy Edmonds, who has been cited for engaging in rampant payroll fraud, and Anna Dow (attorney for IDB) read Phillips the “riot act” for their contention that he is not maintaining a valid mailing address on file with the Auctioneer Licensing Board (see the return certified letter link above).
Well, the very next day, Phillips sent a certified letter to Steinmetz. Guess what? The letter was returned undeliverable. This undeliverable notice transpired despite the fact that Phillips used Steinmetz’s mailing address as readily posted on her corporate website. Moreover, unlike Phillips, whose house continues to be flooded and not yet fully restored, Steinmetz’s office in New Orleans didn’t flood at all!
At next week’s IDB meeting (4/25 @ 12:30 p.m.), will Ms. Dow and Ms. Edmonds be equally vigilant in reading Steinmetz the “riot act” for failing to maintain a deliverable address the way they had no qualms in doing entailing Phillips in the video above? Alternatively, perhaps they will do as Dot Efferson was honest enough to do in the lawsuit referenced in the Courtney feature above and just admit that “
Courtney Steinmetz is too powerful.”
Steinmetz continues actions like this, yet she makes no effort whatsoever to execute her fiduciary duty to the IDB licensees and the taxpayers of Louisiana to ensure their resources aren’t wasted by actions such as Edmonds relaxing on a beach in Orange Beach, Alabama, visiting Disneyworld FOR A FULL WEEK, visiting relatives in Kansas, going on excursions to New York and New Jersey, all while claiming she was “hard at work” for Louisiana taxpayers by reporting being “on the clock” during all these excursions!
On Tuesday (4/18) of this week, Rep. Rick Edmonds, Rep. Alan Seabaugh, and Rep. Blake Miguez all gave resounding addresses to a group of about 120 grassroots activists of the Louisiana Chapter of Americans for Prosperity. Each of them gave very impressive presentations; however, Rep. Miguez’s presentation really stood out.
He gave first-hand accounts entailing how, as a result of the oil industry’s downturn, many of his constituents have lost their jobs and have seen their household incomes plummet. He said it’s particularly hard for them to recognize a need for yet more tax increases given what they are going through in their lives.
Perhaps Ms. Steinmetz may be willing to make an appearance before Miguez’s constituents who have endured such hardships and explain just how she justifies permitting Ms. Edmonds, the wife of an interior designer who happens to teach at LSU and reports to IDB Vice Chairman T. L. Ritchie, to be so entitled to draw checks while sunbathing in Orange Beach, Alabama.
How about it, Ms. Steinmetz, willing to take that challenge?
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