Durham school board terminates superintendent's credit card
Posted October 21, 2013
Durham, N.C. — School board members for Durham Public Schools decided Monday to terminate the district-issued credit card of the school system's superintendent after questionable charges appeared on a number of statements over the past year.
Superintendent Eric Becoats' card had already been suspended as a result of what school board Chairwoman Heidi Carter said were several personal charges. The card is reserved for business expenses, such as hotels and plane tickets.
Monday's decision by the board was the result of a closed-session meeting that lasted more than three hours.
Carter announced afterward that the board plans to continue reviewing the charges on Becoats' card to determine whether other actions, including reimbursement, need to be taken.
The board will also hold an open session to discuss financial controls and procedures, although it did not announce a date for that meeting.
Board members would not comment on whether Becoats' future with the school district was in question.
He did not comment about the matter after Monday night's meeting but said he plans to continue working to enhance the operation of the school district.
"I am going to continue to focus on academic achievement, because at the end of the day, that is most important – to make sure our kids are progressing."
WRAL News reviewed the 331 pages of credit card statements, which show a variety of charges from June 2012 to June 2013. The card, which has a $10,000 limit, had charges ranging from a couple hundred dollars to nearly $2,000.
Becoats did reimburse the school system for those charges.
Still, the school board suspended his use of the card, pending Monday’s meeting, and Becoats was reprimanded in August for using a school bus and driver to shuttle his family to personal events. He repaid those costs.