Governor Reynolds Defends Use of COVID-19 Money on State Computer System

DES MOINES, Iowa - Governor Kim Reynolds is defending her decision to spend COVID-19 relief money on computer system upgrades.

Earlier this week, State Auditor Rob Sand said the use of $21 million from the federal CARES Act is "not allowable."

He said the money would have to be re-paid to the federal government because the computer system doesn't qualify as a COVID-19 expense, and was purchased before the CARES act was passed.

Reynolds says she thinks the computer system is an appropriate expense, and that governors across the country have asked the administration for more flexibility.

Reynolds made the comment while on campaign stop for Senator Joni Ernst.

Sand said he'd consulted with the U.S. Treasury Office to confirm his conclusions, and released a letter Wednesday addressed to the Iowa Department of Management.

The letter from Treasury Department Deputy Inspector General Richard Delmar said the computer system " is not an allowable expenditure as it does not meet the CARES Act criteria."

It asks for Iowa to respond with a "corrective action plan" by October 26th.

Reynolds says her administration will ask for further review form the Treasury Department.

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