Town of Yemassee trying to overcome financial troubles - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Town of Yemassee trying to overcome financial troubles

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Mayor Jerry Cook going over finances for the town of Yemassee. Mayor Jerry Cook going over finances for the town of Yemassee.
YEMASSEE, SC (WTOC) -

Mayor Jerry Cook said he's been meeting with bankers this week to try to reopen a line of credit for the town of Yemasee.

He said they're behind on payments that date back to at least June 2013.

Two months after he was sworn in as the mayor of Yemassee, Cook still has not been able to get a forensic audit done.

"The fee to have this done is going to be around $15,000 minimum," Cook said. "It would take four to five weeks, at least three to four people to do this audit." 

Cook admits the town of Yemasee does not have much money.

"I think yesterday we had about $1,400 or $1,600 in the bank," he said.  

They had to rush to Walterboro earlier this week just to pay their light bill before closing time.

"That's not the first time," said Cook. "Before we took office, that has happened once, or more."

He showed some of the town's expenses, like $34,000 bill to Republic Services that is more than three months behind. Many of them have not been paid in full.

"It's been a big task, issues I never dreamed I'd be looking at," he said.

But Cook says he has been able to trim some of the town's unnecessary expenses, such as phone, payroll and utilities, which will now save them about $70,000 a year.

A former town councilman of 12 years, Cook and other people believe they will pull through it. 

 "I agree with Mayor Cook about what he said as far as the cuts and we have been doing that," said town councilman Colin Moore. "In my opinion, it's going to be a lot better."

Cook said he has another appointment Friday at 10 a.m. with another banker.

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