Backlog for carry permits continues in Chatham County

CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) - The Chatham County manager is refusing to respond to the probate judge's comments about the county breaking the law with long waits on concealed carry permits.

The county manager says he has a meeting with the judge next week. Until then, he has no comment on the long wait for a concealed carry permit. The county attorney agrees that it's a problem that needs to be fixed. For at least the last six months, the wait has been almost five months. That's compared to a week or two in surrounding counties.

"It's not legal. It's not acceptable," said Judge Thomas C. Bordeaux, Jr. "I work many, many hours to try to catch up, but unless we have the administrative staff here to do it, it can't get done."

For now, the county has agreed to give him temporary staff and money for overtime. There is no guarantee that will continue. The probate judge says the county will continue to break the law if the necessary help isn't there. In the process, he says they're opening themselves up for a lawsuit.

"We do everything from wills and probate, to weapons, carry licenses, to firework permits, to mental health evaluations. Everybody comes through this court one way or the other. We have to have the people, we have to have the space to render the services. That's what the taxpayers deserve. That's what they pay for," Judge Bordeaux said.

The manager says he will say more about the staffing and funding after meeting with probate judge. The commission must approve a budget this summer.

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