Augusta-Richmond County commissioners to consider hiring goat herder for $21,000

The issue, brought forward by Commissioner Marion Williams, will be on the Feb. 19th commission agenda

Augusta-Richmond County commissioners to consider hiring goat herder for $21,000

AUGUSTA, GA. (WFXG) - Some found it funny that the city’s goat program was on the commission’s agenda. FOX 54′S Jasmine Anderson heard some “baaaad” jokes when commissioners were kidding around about it.

District 9 Commissioner Marion Williams is passionate about the possibility.

“I think that’s something we haven’t gotten serious about. That’s something that other cities been doing. We got 700 retention ponds, some we’ve never been in," said Commissioner Marion Williams.

The commissioner said hundreds of retention ponds are overgrown. The goats would clean them up.

Williams said the city isn’t doing enough to keep the program moving.

“Retention ponds hold a lot of water, and stuff. For us, we need to retain those waters. When it’s got overgrowth in it, like the trees and the bush and stuff that’s grown in it, well, we can’t get anything else in there,” explained Commissioner Williams.

He said people in Atlanta and other cities reached out to the city of Augusta, wanting to copy the program. However, the city’s Engineering Maintenance Assistant Director Anthony Williams said his inquiries to other cities and his experience with our local program haven’t turned up such positive results.

“The goat program, we’ve been trying it for about 2 1/2 years and the goat program was not very successful," Williams said. This includes an instance when several landscaping goats were killed by dogs while on the job.

However, that could change with the addition of a goat herder, he said.

The city believes, with the right resources, funding and personnel it could be effective. The city department in charge of this recommends hiring the goat herder for $21,000.

The engineering department said the goats are currently in the care of the city’s animal services department. The topic will be back on the agenda next commission meeting, Tuesday, February 19th.

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