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DIGGING DEEPER: Conflicting Accounts

CONKLIN (WBNG) — Members of Town of Conklin government say they were in the dark about how a credit card with the Town and Broome County Executive Debbie Preston’s (R) name on it came to be. 

On Tuesday, when Preston was asked if the Town knew about the card and "if it was on the books," she responded by saying, "Well as the supervisor that is who fills out the forms on that."

During the summer before the flood of 2011, Debbie Preston said she opened up the credit card account with Sam’s club. She said she use the card for personal reasons to replace belongings she lost in the flood. 

Current Town of Conklin Supervisor James Finch (R) was on the board in 2011. He and several other members of Conklin government declined to go on camera Wednesday, but did tell 12 News information about when they found out about the card. 
Finch said the first he ever knew of the credit card was in April 2012, when a bill came to his office. He said he then called Preston’s attorney to sort out the matter and to make sure the bill was paid. 

"The bill was paid and I considered it done," said Finch. 
Finch added Preston never asked for the Town board’s approval or even made members aware of the card’s existence back in 2011. 

12 News dug deeper into the revenue and expenditures for the Town of Conklin in 2011 and 2012. There is no mention of a credit card or expenses for it. 

Preston was not available for comment Wednesday and has asked that all questions regarding this matter be directed to her attorney Paul Battisti.  
Preston said she has sent a letter to the New York State Comptroller’s Office to audit her credit card usage in 2011. 
On Wednesday, a spokesperson with that office said they have yet to receive a letter or email from Preston. 


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