According to responses from Public Records Act requests, CUSD maintains six credit cards: one issued to the Superintendent, two issued to the Superintendent’s administrative staff, and three issued to district-office departments.
Credit cards statements from July 2014 to July 2016 for the six accounts were obtained and analyzed. District office personnel performed 2,094 transactions using the cards during this period. Outside of Purchasing, credit card usage was distributed fairly consistently across the District: Instruction department executed 378 transactions; the Superintendent (and her assistants) executed a combined 370 transactions; and Human Resources executed 205 transactions.
The volume and nature of transactions reveal District-wide, frivolous spending and lack of fiscal prudence and oversight. As the tables below indicate, the majority of transactions occur at discount stores such as Costco, Amazon, Target, and Walmart. In violation of Board Policy 3300, itemized receipts for these transactions were at times not submitted, masking the true nature of the expenditures. Similarly, Paypal – a ubiquitous transaction processor – was used for 48 transactions with combined disbursements of $11,937.13. Credit cards are accepted at merchants that also accept Paypal, and credit cards offer greater purchasing protection. As shown below, the greatest expenditures with credit cards are food, travel, and electronics.
The analysis of credit card transactions showed hundreds of expenditures for books, instructional materials, memberships, electronics, and equipment. It is clear that the purchase order process is not followed or is frequently bypassed by using District credit cards.
District administrators purchased food for meetings 368 times for a total disbursement of $49,458.55. This amount is inclusive of the Superintendent’s local dining meetings. However, it does not include additional food expenditures where payment was disbursed via check. These excessive dining charges are especially egregious considering the District has its own food services department.