Could CADI make a comeback? - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Could CADI make a comeback?


Augusta's Mayor and the Richmond County Commission's discussion on the downtown development district and CADI program was a bit hazy. At one point, they didn't even know which specific motion they were voting on.

"There is nothing to talk about or even approve because nothing exists," said Commissioner Alvin Mason.

Mason is talking about the fact that the original CADI program was disbanded at the end of December. But that didn't stop at least one of his fellow commissioners from again voicing his disapproval, even trying to ban the program indefinitely.

"I'd like to make a motion to deny, and future denial of the cadi bid district protest in downtown Augusta," said Commissioner Joe Jackson.

Commissioners also heard from both sides on the issue of possibly reinstating the cleaning and beautification program and the accompanying tax on downtown business owners. Sanford Loyd is treasurer for the improvement district's board and supports bringing CADI back.

"I want to reinstate it because first of all, the things it wants to do, the supplemental services it wants to provide will be of a tremendous benefit to downtown Augusta," said Loyd.

Loyd says the group did a good job in the past, but downtown business owner Mike Walraven disagrees. He presented what he says is evidence that downtown doesn't need a CADI program, and that city workers pick up trash just fine and that he doesn't want the added expense of the tax.

"This tax generated $350,000 for a 30 block area of downtown for a service that was not needed," Walraven said.

By the end of the night, all sides agreed, this was a divisive discussion that probably won't be finished anytime soon.

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