Larger Naples Hearth District denies it misused CARES Act cash


A lawsuit alleges the Larger Naples Hearth Rescue District misused CARES Act cash and {that a} whistleblower misplaced his job for reporting the misuse of funds.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of former worker Kevin Nelmes, former division chief on the fireplace district.

The lawsuit states Nelmes warned his deputy chief of the misuse and was fired a few week later.

The Larger Naples fireplace Chief J. Nolan Sapp declined to remark, however in a Fb publish, the Larger Naples Hearth Rescue District denied the allegations.

The lawsuit doesn’t handle how the funds have been spent.

The hearth district mentioned it could defend itself in a courtroom of regulation and requested the general public to not be swayed by media protection on the lawsuit.

“It’s also vital to notice that the District’s monetary statements for the fiscal yr ending Sept. 30, 2020, have been audited by an unbiased accounting agency and there have been no deficiencies or cases of noncompliance discovered or reported in relations to the CARES Act funds the District acquired,” the hearth division mentioned.

However, based on paperwork obtained by WINK News via a public data request, the hearth division used $1 million to help workers in the course of the pandemic and one other  $146,770 for private safety gear.

Collier County Commissioner Penny Talor declined to speak about specifics within the lawsuit, however she mentioned each expense was audited by the clerk.

“We have been warned many times, there have been 4 audits first to get to go away our coffers, then to be paid by the clerk, then the state then the federal. In order that’s that’s the place we’re with every thing,” Taylor mentioned.

Nelmes’ legal professional Ben Yormak didn’t reply to a request for remark from WINK News relating to the paperwork obtained.

blank | Larger Naples Hearth District denies it misused CARES Act cash

Aila Slisco

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