Non discrimination ordinance advances


 AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Years after it was first proposed, Augusta commissioners move a step closer to having a non-discrimination ordinance.

“I think we’re in a good place to go forward with the nondiscrimination, look forward to next week having a full vote,” said Commissioner Francine Scott.

The ordinance would have the city compliance department investigate complaints of discrimination and determine if they’re valid and then make a decision.

“We’ll cover all bases, with this I’m behind it I will support it I don’t think it’s something that’s going to take away anything we do in Augusta Georgia,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Bobby Williams.  

The Administrative Services Committee recommended the measure without debate but only four of ten commissioners serve on the committee, and there are questions 

“I’m not sure it’s absolutely needed I’m not sure how we actually monitor that and really put it into effect,” said Commissioner Alvin Mason.  

One worry is that if it goes into effect city government would grow, the compliance department stated earlier it would need new   trained staff members to answer complaints.  

“No, we’re not growing the size of government, think at the beginning they were asking for four employees, absolutely not,” said Commissioner Scott.   

During work sessions city leaders were told other ordinances in the state rarely get used, but Augusta is preparing to have a nondiscrimination ordinance in place.

The ordinance says if a complaint is frivolous or unjustified the person bringing the charge could be made to pay the fees for the hearing officer. 

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