Avery discusses 2018 audit with mayor and council

by | July 12, 2019 12:00 pm

Last Updated: July 12, 2019 at 9:29 am

by WHITLEY CLIFTON

Swainsboro City Council and Mayor Charles Schwabe convened Monday, July 1, at City Hall.

Stacy Avery, certified public accountant, attended and discussed findings from the 2018 financial audit. She reported all findings to have shown increases with only a small decrease being noted under the water and sewage account. She advised that the audit revealed good financial standings for the city and all funds balancing as they should. Avery then answered questions from council regarding the current audit and information relating to a forensic audit process. Council and mayor also inquired about obtaining a corrected audit plan to be performed to outline areas where any improvements can be made. Avery advised that she would get back to the group on this matter.

Council then presented committee reports:

Johnny Parker reported all to be going well within the fire department and announced the recent hiring of new firefighter as well as a recent $100 purchase of a mobile command post.

Sue Bragg stated she had nothing new to report for the recreation department. She advised that she made contact with David Irwin on behalf of a forensic audit bid. She reported that Irwin tried to make contact to submit such a bid and motioned for the deadline to be extended an additional two weeks to allow the bid to be received. Rita Faulkner seconded, and the vote passed 4–2 with Julian Sconyers and Johnny Ray Stafford opposing.

Sconyers reported recent repairs and repainting of water tanks to council and advised the department is running well. Council also discussed a fire hydrate installment on South Central Street and West Moring Street.

Stafford stated all to be well within his department, and the group discussed possible prevention strategies regarding landfill objects being placed beside roadways. They also discussed possible community days that would involve citizen trash pick-up in hopes of fostering unity and pride.

Bobbie Collins said all was well within the administrative department. She advised council of her recent interview with WSAV regarding the city curfew. She then thanked council and law enforcement for enforcing these rules and commended all on a job well done and wished everyone a happy Fourth of July.

Faulkner addressed council on the recent meet-and-greet hosted by Emanuel County Coalition at Gumlog Gym. She thanked law enforcement, fire officials, and medical personnel for their appearance at the event and stated that a good time was had by all.

She and Swainsboro Police Chief Randy Ellison then presented an update to council on recent hires made at the police headquarters and animal shelter.

For the police department, two part-time positions were filled by Martin Walden and Jonathan Jones. The two will begin courses October 9 at the police academy and will begin working with the police department in December.

The animal shelter filled two full-time positions, one being filled by a part-time employee and the other by a college student volunteer.

With the shelter staff already being polled and approved by council, Faulkner motioned for approval to hire the part-time candidates at the police department, Stafford seconded, and the vote passed 5-1. Parker abstained from this motion due to family relations interfering with professional matters.

Discussion about the quarterly civilian weapons course sponsored by the police department then took place. Chief Ellison advised that the July 13 course had been filled.

Al Lawson discussed with council donation submissions and presented each councilperson with an opinion response from the city’s attorney. Throughout the conversation, several questions were addressed as to how future donation processes would be conducted.

Council then heard from Shon Corley regarding an upcoming school supply drive fund request. He stated this annual event promotes unity while helping provide the underprivileged with needed school essentials for each school year.

This year’s drive will welcome a dynamic speaker—whose name has yet to be revealed—and will be held at DeAlva Park on July 13 from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. NAME encouraged all councilpersons and community residents to be present for the drive, and he requested $300 to assist with costs. The request was not approved due to it not being filed a month in advance for approval and not being a budgeted item. However, Parker stated he would make a personal donation of $100, as did Faulkner. Matthew Bright, owner of Taste of Philly also made a donation and others inquired for Corley to make contact the following day to discuss more donations to assist in the event.

Jerome Bynes was scheduled to address council and Mayor Schwabe with possible ideas regarding the recycling center but did not attend. Minutes from the June 3 meeting were reviewed and approved unanimously.

Council then motioned to enter executive session. Results from this session were unavailable as of press time and will be announced at a later date.

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