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      Audit, investigation loom over Linn-San Manuel Vol. Fire Dept

      One Rio Grande Valley fire department is fighting for its existence.

      A fire destroyed Linn-San Manuel Volunteer Fire Department building but now an audit threatens their funding.

      This rural Hidalgo County community is trying to overcome both challenges at the same time.

      The agency TMs building burned to the ground to background back in December.

      In June, investigators ruled that the fire was intentionally set.

      No arrests have been made but a criminal investigation continues. But more recently, the small department is the target of an audit raising serious questions and even concerns about mismanagement of funds.

      The department receives reimbursement for responding to fires and accidents in rural areas of the county.

      Department leaders said they're working to address the issues outlined in the audit.

      But county leaders said they may have to pull their contract with the agency if they can't sort it out.

      Hidalgo County Judge Ramon Garcia said the audit is completely separate from the criminal investigation.

      Garcia said the county remains dedicated to protecting rural residents.

      One proposal is to contract the Edinburg Fire Department to serve areas currently covered by Linn-San Manuel. The findings of the audit are expected to be presented and discussed during a meeting of the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court on Thursday morning.