Just more than $70,000, that's how much Caddo commissioners say they spent on travel last year. They're under budget, which was set at $95,000. Commissioner Michael Thibodeaux says the commission came under budget, but he's still proposed a change to bylaws to close loopholes that allow commissioners more money for extra traveling.
"Everybody is allowed to go to one state meeting and two national meetings," Thibodeaux said.
Thibodeaux says the loophole allows for more travel money if commissioners leave to lobby for their districts. They can also travel first, then ask fellow commissioners to reimburse them later.
"The problem with that was, I may be going to Baton Rouge trying to lobby legislators to pass something that might not be in the full vantage of the parish commission and expecting them to pay for it," he said.
Commissioners will vote this week on Thibodeaux's changes, which closes the loophole and requires commissioners to seek approval before traveling. The proposed change to the bylaws is part several changes from the charter review committee. Commissioners will vote on changes at their meeting on Thursday.