DA: Still no clear end in sight for Bobo deal audit
by Joshua Sharpe
April 24, 2013 11:50 PM | 1614 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CANTON — Several months into a forensic audit of the county’s dealings with Ball Ground Recycling, and the Cherokee County District Attorney Shannon Wallace says there’s still no clear end in

sight for the investigation.

McClendon and Associates, an accounting firm from Newnan, has been handling the audit into the Cherokee County Resource Recovery Development Authority’s deal with BGR owner Jimmy Bobo to guarantee debt on $18 million in bonds to move his facility from Blalock Road to Highway 5.

The RRDA was formed in 2006 for that purpose, and since Bobo filed bankruptcy last year, the county has been responsible for $100,000 a month in payments on the bonds.

Wallace said Wednesday that as of yet, McClendon and Associates has not released a time frame for completion of the audit.

But she said she’s not surprised it’s becoming a long process.

“There are thousands of documents involved,” she said.

She’s also not surprised that the Newnan company has asked for more than triple the budget they originally requested for the audit.

The board of commissioners voted to grant the increase, giving the firm a price cap of more than $300,000 for the process.

Wallace said she has spoken with McClendon and Associates on their progress but hasn’t received any real details on their findings.

She will, though, have the opportunity to be the first to review their report. She said she made this request to County Attorney Angela Davis.

At its last meeting the board of commissioners voted to comply with her request, at the recommendation of Davis, who said that it would allow for transparency and quell concerns of the county altering the report.

This will also be of benefit should any criminal charges come out of the investigation.

Wallace said she can’t rule out that possibility.

“I don’t know whether there has been a crime committed or not,” she said, though she said she hasn’t seen evidence to suggest criminal activity.

But “No one knows what the audit will reveal,” she said.

In addition to the forensic audit, three grand juries have also investigated the BGR deal.

The last of them released their findings and recommendations for moving forward last week.

One recommendation was that no further grand jury investigate the issue until the results of the forensic audit is released. Wallace said this recommendation will likely be followed.

But another grand jury will be formed in Cherokee County on May 13, and it still could take up the Bobo case if eight or more members of the 23-member jury vote to do so.
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