A sunny Saturday brought Richmond County residents out to Julian Smith Casino to learn more about their government and city services.
Representatives from about 25 different departments including the Augusta-Richmond County Fire Department, tax assessors’ office, the water works department, the procurement office and parks and recreations had booths with fliers and information as well as swag for people to take with them at the second annual Augusta On Display event June 3.
Employees from each department were available to answer questions.
Outside, there was a “touch a truck” display for the young and the young at heart to get an up-close view of fire trucks, an ambulance, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Department bomb disposal unit among others. The Augusta Richmond County Library bookmobile was on site as well.
“This allows our residents to have an opportunity to meet department leaders and learn more about their government on a more personal level,” said Danielle Hayes, the City of Augusta’s public information manager.
Also, the Created2Play drum line performed during the event, and there was a children’s play area with bounce houses. Skywalker and Kate, two dogs from Richmond County Animal Services, were on site and hopeful of being adopted, wagging their tails and being friendly to anyone approaching.
Sparky from the Augusta-Richmond County Fire Department and Deputy Rich Mond from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Department, also made appearances.
“We got a really good response last year. We had some repeat folks who said they enjoyed last year and wouldn’t miss this year for anything,” said Hayes. “People want to engage. We want to engage. This is an opportunity for us to remain transparent. That’s a main priority for us.”
Mayor Garnett Johnson gave a short welcome before visiting with employees and constituents.
“To all our community guests, thank you for taking the time to learn more about our government and all the important functions we perform for you. To my teammates at the city, I’m going to send you another ‘thanks’ because as you know for the last few days we’ve been going through something, and you guys have been cheerful contributors in helping us meet the needs of our constituents,” he said. “Hopefully, we’ll be out of this soon.”
People attending were also given a survey to provide their input on what they felt were the most important needs for the city to address.
Hayes said that the annual event will be held in different parts of the county each year. The inaugural Augusta On Display was at Diamond Lakes in south Augusta.
Charmain Z. Brackett, the publisher of Augusta Good News, has covered Augusta’s news for 35 years. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up for the newsletter here.
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