Scandals Mount at COA
The scandals at the East Baton Rouge Parish Council on Aging continue to mount under director Tasha Clark Amar, daughter of District Judge Janice Clark. Last week, the Plummer family accused Clark Amar of swindling them out of $314,000 left by their grandmother, Helen Plummer, a 95-year-old client of the agency who died last month. COA board member Dorothy Jackson prepared a will making Clark Amar both executor and trustee of the will with compensation of $500 a month for the next 21 years, or about $120,000, far more than the 2.5 percent, or about $7,850 set by state law. Councilmen Buddy Amoroso and Dwight Hudson have called for Clark Amar to resign.Metro Councilmen Buddy Amoroso and Dwight Hudson have called on Council on Aging Executive Director Tasha Clark Amar, daughter of politically powerful District Judge Janice Clark, to resign after a new scandal has hit Clark Amar and the COA.
Amoroso and Hudson were reacting to charges by Tracie Davis and Dan Freeman, who say Clark Amar swindled their grandmother, Helen Plummer, out of control of more than $314,000.
Ms. Plummer, who died last month just before her 95th birthday, was a client of the Council on Aging. One of the COA’s board members, Dorothy Jackson, drew up a will for Ms. Plummer, making Clark Amar both the executor and trustee of the estate. The will provided that Clark Amar would be paid $500 a month for her services for the next 21 years, for a total of more than $120,000. This amount is far more than the 2.5 percent fee that should be paid under state law, which would amount to $7,850.
Ms. Davis and Mr. Freeman say the entire arrangement is a sham. The family has never even met Clark Amar or had any connection with her, they said.
Meanwhile, a host of Democratic elected officials sprang to Clark Amar’s defense, claiming the Plummer family’s charges were an attack on the Council on Aging.
State Sen. Regina Barrow, State Reps. Ted James, Pat Smith, and Denise Marcelle, along with Metro Councilman Lamont Cole all defended Clark Amar’s actions.
Ms. David and Mr. Freeman, who are black, said they are disappointed that black political leaders they have supported all their lives have abandoned them to support the wrongdoing of the Council on Aging executive director.
The latest scandal comes on the heels on a number of allegations of wrongdoing plaguing the Council on Aging and Clark Amar. Clark Amar politicized the agency since taking over, holding a thinly veiled campaign rally for Hillary Clinton at taxpayer expense and using tax dollars to haul more than 1,000 voters to the polls to vote for Clinton for President, Foster Campbell for Senator, and a host of candidates for Mayor-President or Metro Council.
Clark Amar has also come under attack for firing white employees of the COA and making the agency into more and more a one-race organization.
Today, Clark Amar is scheduled to appear before District Judge Don Johnson to ask that she be placed in possession of Mrs. Plummer’s estate. She will be opposed by Mrs. Plummer’s grandchildren. On Wednesday, Clark Amar said she will step aside so that one of her employees, Trudy Bihm, can be the executor of the will. Last week, Bihm tried to block a news camera from videoing Clark Amar.