- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 20, 2016

DELHI, Iowa (AP) - A former town clerk was arrested and charged Tuesday with theft in the wake of a state audit that found nearly $247,000 in improper and unsupported municipal spending in the small Delaware County community of Delhi.

The town’s former clerk, Angie Billings, was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree theft and one count of second-degree theft, Delaware County Attorney John Bernau said Tuesday afternoon. Billings remained jailed on a $25,000 cash bond and could not be reached for comment.

A report released by the state auditor’s office said the improper disbursements included more than $88,000 in credit card charges for personal purchases by Billings, who left her post last year. The purchases were made at several retailers and other businesses and, according to the report, included 33 charges totaling nearly $2,000 to psychic hotlines.

The state auditor’s office report said the special audit was requested by the city and included records from March 2007 through January 2015.

The report said that when auditors asked Billings whether she could explain the personal purchases made on the city credit card, she responded by saying, “I did a lot of purchases for myself.”

The improper disbursements included more than $69,000 in payroll checks Billings issued to herself that included payment for hours in excess of the maximum hours she was expected to work weekly, the report said.

The audit also noted that the city had overbilled sewer customers nearly $257,000 from April 2010 through April 2016 because the City Council never passed any ordinance that would have reflected the council’s intention to raise the rate to $26 a month from $10 a month. Mayor Terry Harbach didn’t immediately return a call from The Associated Press.

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