Booted TUSD audit committee member is back

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Another shake-up in TUSD. This time in an attempt to strengthen oversight of district's financial practices. The board voted 3 to 2 last night to bring back an audit committee member, who was kicked out in 20-15 after asking tough budget questions.

Jimmy Lovelace is CPA and once a vocal member and chair of TUSD's audit committee. But shortly after he publicly criticized the district for making unforced errors in the budget, the board majority changed the charter to exclude members who lived outside the district.

Lovelace, along with Chuck Krill, live outside TUSD lines and were booted out.

Lovelace said back then that the move was to prevent future oversight under the leadership of former Superintendent H.T. Sanchez. Not only did the district come under intense scrutiny over controversial issues, such as teacher's pay, possible budget over spending, and his 24-percent salary hike so did the audit committee.

KGUN9 investigated conflicts of interest that led to a charter clean-up, which forced two audit members to step down after it was discovered their spouses worked for the district -- a direct violation. And then-board president Adelita Grijalva and the district's CFO Karla Soto were stripped of their voting power.

So Jimmy Lovelace is back on the audit committee. He tells KGUN9 he plans to work with the district's incoming internal auditor and external auditors to help strengthen budget oversight.     

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