May 7, 2010 11:39 AM by David Ortiviz

School Network audit highlights extreme spending

Fallout continues over a critical financial audit of the Cesar Chavez School Network.

For example, in one year the network spent $36,423 eating out at 165 restaurants. According to the report, nearly a third of that was spent by Dr. Lawrence Hernandez the former Chief Executive Officer, his wife Annette the former Chief Operating Officer, and Jason Guerrero Chief Financial Officer.

The audit shows the network spent $30,933.68 in airline travel and $36,170.27 in hotels fees--including a trip to New Orleans, where school staff stayed at the Ritz Carlton at a cost of $279 per night, plus $32 a day vallet parking.

The report is sprinkled with other odd expenditures. For example credit card receipts show Annette spent $506.93 on homecoming dresses. Also, an Executive Administrative Assistant spent $76.78 at Primetime sports bar.

In all, the audit found the network made more than $400,000 in credit card purchases, which often lacked documentation regarding the business purpose.

I also found out this morning that for the 2008-2009 school year Cesar Chavez Academy and Dolores Huerta Preparatory High received $10 million in taxpayer funding.

So what happened to the network's top leaders? Guerrero wanted to resign last year, but was asked to stay on board until the audit was complete. His home is now for sale. Lawrence and Annette Hernandez were fired by the board last year. They sold their home in El Camino and are now living in Denver.

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