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Augusta officials grapple with Recreation Department thefts

Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 9:07 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Nearly $30,000 worth of equipment was stolen from the Augusta Recreation Department and leaders say it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

On Tuesday, the Augusta Commission discussed concerns from personnel to oversight, after trailers and lawnmowers went missing, and security cameras were allegedly turned off.

There’s one theft report on file with the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office from July. It estimates a $29,000 loss for the city. But leaders claim there’s been ongoing theft for more than a year and lack of reporting it.

One commissioner argued years of mismanagement of the entire recreation department and he’s now calling for an internal investigation.

“This is so serious to me because we are talking about our taxpayers' dollars missing,” District 9 Commissioner Marian Williams said.

“We are working to mitigate the situation and handle processes differently and hold those accountable who’ve been involved,” Maurice McDowell of the Recreation Department said.

News 12 was told two employees were asked to resign from the department as part of these issues.

Copyright 2020 WRDW/WAGT. All rights reserved.

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