SEVEN YEARS ago, state auditors had the number of Michael McLaughlin, the conniving former director of the Chelsea Housing Authority. But it appears they looked the other way in an extraordinary breach of public trust and professional ethics. It is yet another sad reflection on the tenure of former Auditor Joseph DeNucci.
A recent Globe report uncovered evidence that auditors in DeNucci’s office flagged McLaughlin’s bloated salary and his efforts to conceal it from the state in 2005, 2008, and 2010. And each time, they failed to include the findings in their auditing report. By the time the Globe exposed McLaughlin’s scam in October, he was earning an obscene $360,000 to run a small housing authority and reporting only $180,000 to the state.