A state investigation shows an eastern Iowa man who died last year was responsible for mishandling more than $48,000 in funds belonging to an organization that seeks to preserve the historical and cultural characteristics of the Amana Colonies. Wallace Pasbrig served as Administrator of the Amana Colonies Land Use District from May 2007 until his death in March 2011.

Shorlyt after Pasbrig died, Deputy State Auditor Warren Jenkins says his office was called in by the district’s board of directors.

“The replacement administrator, in the process of taking over his duties, became aware of some items that appeared questionable to him. At that point, he talked to the board and we were asked to come in and take a look at what was going on,” Jenkins said.

The state audit shows Pasbrig issued payroll checks to himself without the board’s approval. “Most of the money in question revolves around payroll to the administrator,” Jenkins said. “Much of it was unsupported by time records or approvals from the board and part of that was payroll taxes that go along with that payroll.”

The unsupported or improper payroll issued to Pasbrig accounted for nearly $35,000 of the $48,220 identified in the audit. Jenkins said Pasbrig also made improper purchases with the district’s debit card, used district finances to make payments on his personal credit card and made unauthorized transfers from the district’s checking account to his personal checking account.

Pasbrig’s obituary states he died at the age of 71 following a brief illness. The state audit includes several recommendations for the Amana Colonies Land Use District to strengthen its operations and ensure better oversight of payroll records and receipts.

See the complete audit report here: AmanaColonies PDF