Not under investigation

Livingston Parish Assessor Jeff Taylor, says that the Louisiana Legislative Auditor has informed his office that as of Tuesday, his office was not under investigation.

As of Tuesday, there is no investigation into the Livingston Parish Assessor's Office.

According to a report released Monday evening, the Louisiana Legislative Auditor (LLA) had launched an investigation into the office's operations and finances.

A phone call between Assessor Jeff Taylor and the LLA established that was not the case. Taylor went on to say that the LLA assured him that their office would never inform the media of an investigation before giving notice to the person or entity under investigation.

Both the Legislative Auditor and Campaign Finance/Board of Ethics receive complaints throughout the year, and those complaints ramp up during election season. They must analyze all of them, regardless of source or wording, including the complaint itself and circumstantial evidence.

From there, they must decide if it warrants further action and what that action might be. In this case, the LLA is still in the analysis phase for the complaint, but could take warranted action in the future should they determine it necessary.

However, while the Board of Ethics will summon a candidate to meet with the board and potentially take punitive action during a campaign, typically the Legislative Auditor will not investigate during an active campaign.

Taylor, his office, and his wife Delia have been the focus of several reports since the beginning of September. Initially it was alleged that the couple were engaging in 'enrichment' by having Delia - who owns a media company - run the marketing for Taylor's campaigns. The News later discovered that the payments made to Delia were reimbursements, as media companies are charged up front for campaign purchases - usually due to the difficulty of collecting after the campaign is over.

Roughly a week later, one of Taylor's former employees went on TV anonymously and stated that Taylor used the office to treat friends by lowering their assessments - or raising them for people who disliked him. 

An instance of a double-homestead was discovered, which Taylor wrote off as a 'mistake' and said would be fixed, and much of the report was redacted or corrected after the fact - including multiple instances of men named 'John Blount' on campaign finance reports, after Taylor was accused of taking money from the same man several times.

There is a John Blount who owns a construction company and a large amount of land in Livingston Parish, however he made but one donation to Taylor's campaign. The other Blounts were of no relation.

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