The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (ALPLM) in Springfield. (WICS)
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS/WRSP) — State lawmakers demanded answers on Tuesday, April 20, from executive staff at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (ALPLM) over the results of a recent audit report.
Fiscal mismanagement and improper loaning of artifacts were the clear findings from the audit conducted by a private third-party into fiscal years 2018 and 2019.
The audit concluded with 15 key findings, 10 of which are related to fiscal mismanagement.
The auditor said that during that time, the ALPLM “did not maintain adequate internal controls over receipts and refunds" and "did not maintain sufficient controls over its property and related fiscal records."
The auditor also found that 1 in 3 reviewed artifacts in the museum’s collections were loaned outside the museum without proper documentation, including a copy of the Gettysburg Address to a museum owned by radio host Glenn Beck.
Museum staff say no previously loaned artifacts have been damaged or lost.
The museum’s acting Executive Director, Melissa Coultas, directly addressed the audit findings, saying new policies and staff are in place to address the issues found and prevent them from reoccurring.
“The ALPLM received the results of the audit at a time when new professionals were just coming on board,” Coultas said. “These pros have been determined to address these oversights.”
The museum is subject to public hearings because it functions as an official state agency that receives funding from taxpayer dollars. This is the first audit into the museum since first becoming an independent public agency.
Gov. JB Pritzker fired the museum’s previous director, Alan Lowe, in 2019. A new director is set to start in June.
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April 20, 2021 at 09:08PM