Dougherty Co. Commission talks grants for GBI training, Arbor Day plans

GBI: Grant to help fight drug trafficking in Albany

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The Dougherty County Commission discussed several topics on Monday.

One was a Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) agent updating commissioners on training and asking them to accept a $248,000 grant.

GBI Special Agent in Charge Eric Schwalls said COVID-19 affected their ability to get some training done.

Schwalls said they are building up their personnel, but many of them haven’t worked narcotics before. Currently, Schwalls said, agents are training on meth lab investigations.

During his presentation, one of the commissioners was curious as to how serious the drug cases were.

“The drugs that we got, a majority of them were methamphetamine. Our focus is on the trafficking level offenders, which is normally methamphetamine, cocaine, the more illicit drugs,” said Schwalls.

Schwalls said they work marijuana cases when they get them, but it isn’t their main focus.

The agent said the grant funding will be to fight drug trafficking in the area.

Executive Director for Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful Judy Bowles talked about upcoming Arbor Day plans.
Executive Director for Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful Judy Bowles talked about upcoming Arbor Day plans. (Source: Dougherty County Government)

The commissioners also heard about upcoming Arbor Day plans.

Executive Director of Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful Judy Bowles said they received two $10,000 grants for the Arbor Day celebration.

They applied and received a $10,000 grant from Southwest Georgia Regional. Georgia Pacific also gave a donation of $10,000 to their office.

“We were able to put $20,000 into this project, which is a $41,000 project, so we’ll be planting 49 trees.”

Arbor Day Celebrations will take place this Feb. 26-27.

Bowles said the event will be very limited to volunteers. She says they are not opening them to the public.

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