LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — A new board of employees from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has set new policies to deal with nepotism, absenteeism and ethics at the Lafayette Housing Authority.

A HUD spokeswoman says the agency has cut $300,000 in contracts, tightened financial controls and reassigned staff since taking over the troubled local agency March 31, citing questionable spending and management found by state audits.

The audits had prompted the resignation of former executive director Walter Guillory in October.

HUD spokeswoman Patricia Campbell says that the agency plans to hire a chief operating officer to help manage the Housing Authority.