COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Rep. Mia McLeod says she is pre-filing legislation to allow the removal of members of the Richland County Recreation Commission, but first, she wants them to resign.
In a 15-minute news conference, McLeod said it's time for new leadership at the commission. The recreation commission has come under a considerable amount of scrutiny in the past two years following allegations of corruption, nepotism, and fraud.
"If every allegation, rumor, or innuendo prove to not be true, this recreation director and the commissioners who support him will still be operating under a cloud of suspicion, facing a disheartened and frustrated public that has simply lost faith and trust," McLeod said.
She also enthusiastically rejected accusations from some lawmakers that there is a racial divide over the recreation commission.
McLeod said, at this point, even if all members of the commission are exonerated, this ongoing scandal has created an issue that affects commission employees, and Richland County families.
The commission is also the defendant in at least five different lawsuits dealing with potential civil rights violations, sexual harassment, and discrimination. SLED and the FBI are conducting investigations into the agency and executive director James Brown III is the target of a lawsuit.
Richland County lawmakers have tried to pursue reform at the scandal-plagued commission.
Any attempts at reform will not be taken up at the state legislative level until the January 2017 session.