Chris Welty Continues Investigation into UL's La Louisiane

By Chris Welty | cwelty@cajunfirst.com

Published 02/16 2017 05:33PM

Updated 02/16 2017 05:34PM

After a year-and-a-half, UL Lafayette is releasing its latest edition of La Louisiane, The Magazine of the University. 

This issue covers both the Fall 2016 and Winter 2017, but typically the magazine just covers one semester. 

On page one of La Louisiane, the biggest change came only after KLAF's Chris Welty started asking questions. 

Since our investigation aired in November, UL Lafayette has removed any publishing promises from its magazine, La Louisiane, and its website. The magazine began in 1989 and for more than 25 years, editors promised to publish it twice a year.

The magazine has been published a total of 45 times, but during our investigation, we found twelve issues were actually never printed. Each student pays a fee of $2.50 per semester, collectively adding up to more than $75,000 a year. University attorney Robin Mcgee said self-assessed fees only cover a portion of the cost to produce La Louisiane. 

If the magazine is not printed one semester, the collected fees remain in the account and are used for production of the next issue the following semester. The editor of La Louisiane, Kathleen Thames is paid more than $76,000 a year and nearly 12% of her entire salary is paid for from La Louisiane student fees, that's according to her director Aaron Martin. 

Back in November, some students called for Thames' to lose her job saying she should be held accountable for her role in printing the magazine regularly. Despite their plea, Thames still has her job. 

Thames says the Office of Communications and Marketing is working on the next issue of  La Louisiane. We also reached out to the University of Louisiana System which oversees UL. They were unaware of our investigation.

 

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