Commissioners bump heads as far as what to do with Probation Office

Commissioners bump heads as far as what to do with Probation Office

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - Augusta Commissioners say the Probation Offices are going through some "growing pains.

"It's just not designed to be ran by a commission because we're not in the law and we're not in the court system. And to be truthful it's over every one of our heads trying to run a probation office," says Commissioner Wayne Guilfoyle.

Commissioners were bumping heads during Tuesday's discussion about what to do about the current state of the Probation Office.

"All of the conversations I've heard is about how bad it is now. But 6 months ago it was the best thing since sliced bread," says Commissioner Marion Williams.

Several months ago, FOX 54 told you that the office was dealing with certification issues. Those issues that included more than 9 probation officers not being able to work and close to 4000 cases being handled by a handful of  workers.

"We need to as an elected body to bring this back in house under the administrator or up under the commission," says Commissioner Williams.

The current Chief Probation Officer is on administrative leave because that person isn't considered certified. "You have to have a post certified officer in charge. You just can't pull anybody off the street, you can't pick anybody who's not post certified," says Commissioner Guilfoyle.

There was no decision was made on Tuesday but instead the matter will go to the Public Safety Committee next week as they will try to iron out these problems.

"That's a place where you go, you don't have a smile on your face even though you were wrong. Even though you messed up, you want somebody to have some mercy. You want someone to have some understanding, you want someone to have some consideration," says Commissioner Williams.

Next week, Commissioners are expected to hear from Judge David Watkins, who is overseeing the probation program.

Copyright 2017 WFXG. All rights reserved.