A state audit has identified over $9,000 worth of questionable transactions at a small central Iowa library. Collins is a small town in the southeast corner of Story County.
Darlene Nelson, the president of the Collins Library Board, resigned last July after questions were raised about certain transactions at the library. The audit found Nelson had been over-paid by about $5,000 for her job as a library assistant. State Auditor Dave Vaudt says she reported “excessive hours” she didn’t actually work over a two-year period.
In addition, Nelson had been reimbursed for nearly $1,800 worth of books and movies which “could not be located in the library.” The audit found another $2,000 worth of movie rental fees, candy sales, library donations and even grants to the library from the state had not been deposited in the library’s account.
The audit concluded Nelson had been paid about $550 for other purchases and mileage claims that were “not supported by proper documentation.” In one instance, Nelson had submitted receipts for books that had been donated to the library by its former director.
Nelson told the City Clerk in Collins she bought the books, and asked for reimbursement. The audit has been referred to state and local authorities.