Audit requested by state lawmakers on disaster relief money

Reporter: Claire Galt Writer: Rachel Murphy
Published: Updated:
$100 dollar bills (CREDIT WINK News)

A group of state lawmakers representing Lee County want an audit of how the government spent disaster relief dollars.

After the pandemic and Hurricane Ian, Lee County has received billions in relief money. A group of four state lawmakers want to make sure Lee County leaders put the money to good use.

State Senator Jonathan Martin from Fort Myers is one of the four, “I’m close with many of our county commissioners. I don’t think that this hurts them at all. I think this provides more credibility, more ability to say, ‘Look, we’re verified. Here’s our local audits.’ I think that strengthens our ability to continue to get money for the right reasons.”

Martin signed a letter asking Lee County Clerk of Court Kevin Karnes to provide a full audit of county funds from the past three years.

Letter asking for audit (CREDIT:

State Representative Spencer Roach from North Fort Myers disagrees.

“My fear is that when we go back to Tallahassee and advocate for more money for the county, if the county commission has a cloud hanging over it about how they’re spending the money, I don’t think that my colleagues in the House and Senate are going to be willing to be as generous with Lee County,” Roach said.

When asked to sign the letter calling for the audit, Roach passed. He believes Lee County has it covered.

“I think that the checks and balances of local government should be allowed to play out without state interference,” said Roach.

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