AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) — One particular topic up for discussion Tuesday had some commissioners scratching their heads.

“This topic didn’t go through [the] committee cycle, I’m not sure what the angle is, and I’m not really sure what the conversation is about.”

When Augusta residents pay their water bill and stormwater fee, not all that money goes to those departments. The city treats departments that collect payments like businesses and basically tax them.

It has city leaders asking how, and how much?

“Why are enterprise monies going into the General Fund, and why is General Fund paying monies out? Yes we need to have a discussion about it, we need to have a discussion about it ASAP,” said Commissioner John Clarke.

“We’ll continue to we get these answers, whether it calls for more justification for an audit and what have you, this is serious business here,” said Commissioner Alvin Mason.   

Finance officials say this practice dates to at least 1999, and was approved by the commission. After a presentation, some were not ready to pull the plug.

“We need to talk to the Finance Director a little bit I think before we jump the gun, we need to make sure we know what we’re talking about,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Bobby Williams.

But this is a fact when you make payments to a city enterprise fund, the city general fund also gets its cut.