Trustee charged $36K to home improvement stores — presumably for renovations

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EDITOR’S Notice: This is a single of various reviews on courtroom-purchased launch of Fairfield Township’s credit score card documents and what these credit rating card statements reveal. On the other hand, Trustee Taletha Coles did not turn more than the receipts for the credit score credit card buys and there are lacking statements..

LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Fairfield Township Trustee Taletha Coles chalked up her $113,259 in credit rating card expenses in excess of three many years to her renovations at the township’s business on Wabash Avenue, but only $36,691.51 can be specifically tied to house advancement purchases.

A Journal & Courier’s ongoing review of the court docket-purchased release of the township’s credit history card statements showed that amongst January 2019 and July 2021, Coles billed $36,691.51 to neighborhood residence enhancement retailers, as very well as to Just Blinds, Best Buy, and Cork Flooring.

Taletha Coles, Fairfield Township trustee, during a Fairfield Township budget proposal meeting, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021 in Lafayette.

Taletha Coles, Fairfield Township trustee, all through a Fairfield Township spending budget proposal assembly, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021 in Lafayette.

On the other hand, there are various months that do not have credit card statements, and there are statements that are only two web pages. The paperwork reveal there are various lacking pages that were being not supplied to the public.

The Journal & Courier emailed Coles for remark about the investing, together with additional than $2,000 of purchases at Finest Obtain in March 2020. Coles did not reply.

In May 2019, Coles charged $984 to Just Blinds, presumably for the township’s office environment. She also charged extra than $1,300 that thirty day period to Countrywide Organization Home furniture. In June 2019, Coles charged $2,652.59 to Cork Flooring and $700 to Kirklands in Lafayette.

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The credit card statements reveal other expenses to suppliers that might force the renovation totals even bigger, but without the need of the receipts, which the J&C asked for, there’s no way to get a a lot more exact accounting.

The Indiana Condition Police and the Point out Board of Accounts are investigating the township’s finances given that Coles grew to become trustee in January 2019.

Coles was managing for re-election Tuesday in the Democratic primary. She confronted competition from Fairfield Township Board associates Rocky Hession and Monica Casanova.

Republican Fairfield Township trustee prospect April O’Brien is jogging unopposed and will facial area the Democratic principal winner.

In the past, Coles blamed her significant credit history card investing — like common buys at the Lafayette Sam’s Club — on the renovations. The Journal & Courier did not consist of any Sam’s Club purchases in the full described these days for the reason that there are not indications that the Sam’s Club buys experienced anything at all to do with renovations.

Expending: Fairfield Township trustee charged $41K on credit card in 2021

In its Sept. 17, 2021, request to inspect community paperwork, The Journal & Courier asked for to examine credit card receipts as effectively as credit rating card statements.

The Journal & Courier filed a lawsuit on March 17, 2022, for Coles to generate the requested paperwork. Coles presented some monthly credit rating card statements, but there are pages missing and months missing from all those statements.

Access Ron Wilkins at [email protected] Observe on Twitter: @RonWilkins2.

This article initially appeared on Lafayette Journal & Courier: Lafayette trustee charged $36K to dwelling enhancement retailers

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