OSA Investigative Report Contributed to a Plea Agreement of more than $200,000 in Theft from Albert Lea Housing and Redevelopment Authority - October 25, 2022

Contact: Donald McFarland | 651-236-0494

Saint Paul, MN – The Office of the State Auditor (OSA) assisted the Albert Lea Police Department by providing information regarding the financial records of the Albert Lea Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA). The OSA reviewed financial issues including a shortfall of cash deposits, missing cash receipt records, and questionable supply purchases and reductions of tenant accounts receivable.

“Our special investigations team reviewed financial records from 2011 to 2018 and found a cash shortfall of over $200,000,” said State Auditor Blaha. “The investigative report prepared by my office in cooperation with the Albert Lea Police Department, along with the efforts of federal prosecutors led to the plea agreement which should result in restitution to the Albert Lea HRA.”

The OSA assisted law enforcement with the eventual charging of the former bookkeeper for theft of $213,217 from the HRA. Last week, the former bookkeeper pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of Theft from Program Receiving Federal Funds.

The complete investigative report is available on the OSA website.