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New Hampton Light Plant audit finds money improperly went to former manager

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David Vaudt
Iowa State Auditor David Vaudt

DES MOINES — Auditor of State David A. Vaudt Friday released a report on a special investigation of the New Hampton Municipal Light Plant for the period Jan. 1, 2001, through May 31, 2012.

The special investigation was conducted after light plant officials learned collections from the sale of scrap metal were distributed to employees rather than being deposited for the light plant.

Vaudt reported the special investigation identified $64,926.73 of undeposited collections and improper disbursements.

That amount included $55,085.75 from the sale of scrap metal, $3,669 of cash collections located in the office of the light plant’s former General Manager, Brian Geschke, and $5,755 of payments issued by North Iowa Municipal Electric Cooperative Association (NIMECA) to Geschke.

The $416.98 of improper disbursements identified includes $257.98 of hotel charges, $123 of rental car fees and $36 of airport parking fees for three days during trips to Florida and California when Geschke was not attending conferences or traveling to or from the conference location, the audit states.

Vaudt also reported it was not possible to determine if additional collections were not properly deposited because adequate records for all collections, such as receipt books, weigh tickets and receipts for scrap metal collections, were not available.

The report includes recommendations to strengthen the light plant’s internal controls and overall operations, such as requiring adequate documentation to support collections, requiring all collections be properly deposited with the City Clerk and implementing procedures to track the weight and value of scrap metal prior to sale.

Because the Chickasaw County Attorney has referred this matter to the Floyd County Attorney’s Office, a copy of the report has been filed with that Office.

Copies of the report have also been filed with the Attorney General’s Office, the Chickasaw County Sheriff’s Office and the Division of Criminal Investigation. A copy of the report is available for review in the Office of Auditor of State and on the Auditor of State’s website at http://auditor.iowa.gov/specials/1223-0167-BE00.pdf.

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