Was originally posting this as a question, but I solved the issue while i was writing it up. Since extensive googling did not reveal an answer, I’m providing some information below, in case it helps anyone in the future.
I installed RT 4.4.1 on a Centos 7 server. It works great, doing nearly what I want from it. Hurrah.
Unfortunately, it was also flooding /var/log/messages and /var/log/httpd with perl warnings every time the Web UI refreshed. There are a few different warnings, but the worst offender by far was this one
“Use of uninitialized value $ret in string eq at /usr/local/share/perl5/Tree/Simple.pm line 475.”
It appears in messages and error_log simultaneously - sometimes dozens of them a second, and well over a hundred a minute.
It turns out this is a bug in CPAN Tree:Simple 1.32. I used CPAN to update the module to 1.33
cpan upgrade Tree::Simple
Then I restarted the httpd server
systemctl restart httpd
The result was blessed silence in my log files. Hope this helps someone else out in the future.