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Tribunal recommends Riggins' suspension

ATLANTA — A three-member review commission appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal to look into Dougherty School Board member Velvet Riggins' indictment on felony school lunch fraud charges on Friday recommended that she be removed from office until the charges are resolved.

Deal spokesperson Stephanie Mayfield said in an email Monday that the governor was considering the recommendation. There was no indication in the email as to when a decision would be made.

Mark Brimberry of Albany, Riggins' attorney, said this afternoon that he had no immediate response to the decision.

"I have yet to speak to Ms. Riggins, and out of fairness I don't feel I can comment this time," said Brimberry.

On June 15, Deal appointed Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens, Henry County School Board member Erik Charles and Tift County School Board member Shawn Utley to review the charges against Riggins and to make a recommendation on whether the charges impact her ability to perform as a school board member.

The panel met with Riggins and Brimberry and with Assistant District Attorney Heather Lanier, who was representing special prosecutor District Attorney Joe Mulholland, on June 26 in Atlanta. On Friday, the tribunal reported to the governor that "the commission has determined the charges relate to and adversely affect the administration of the office of the Board member."

The Review Commission recommended that Riggins be suspended from office. Deal is not bound by the commission's recommendation.

Riggins was indicted on April 25 by a Dougherty County grand jury on two counts of theft by taking, public record fraud and providing false information to obtain free school meals for a child.

The indictment stems from two 2011-12 free or reduced-cost school lunch applications filed for her children at Robert Cross Middle Magnet School and Lincoln Elementary Magnet School.

Riggins represents District 3 on the School Board. Her term expires Dec. 31, but she is running unopposed for a new four-year term in the Nov. 6 general election.

Comments

chinaberry25 1 year, 9 months ago

Recommended is not a done deal. We'll see.

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ontario1966 1 year, 9 months ago

I can't wait to see her, with her head down as she leaves!!!!!! Good going to a very smart panel!!! Good riddens Riggins!!! LMAO!!! YEA!!!!!!!

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Bubbavet_rureel 1 year, 9 months ago

Yes, head down means praying for you devils.

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ontario1966 1 year, 9 months ago

Baker and Riggins can have lunch together at the soup kitchen!!!

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

Getting "lawyered up" probably.

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

So, if she is found guilty, do we have a vacant board seat at re-election time? Hmmm, the trial may not even be lined up and finished by that time.

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waltspecht 1 year, 9 months ago

Wonder if it affects her status for re-election?

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

I would hope it would affect it.

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MisterEd 1 year, 9 months ago

I wonder if this should make null and void any votes that she has taken since the indictment? But you can take this to the bank.........if it's left up to those down here, the train will not jump the track. They'll keep right on chugging along, dragging the system down the rails to nowhere..........because lying & cheating ain't all that bad, right? It's just the DCSS way.

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Trustbuster 1 year, 9 months ago

Riggins has broken the public's trust in this case. She should resign regardless what her lawyers claim. How can she be an effective board member?

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Progressive 1 year, 9 months ago

Someone in a position such as a School Board Commissioner should know the rules, and should be considered as someone who can be trusted to make good decisions. There can be no integrity or trust left in someone who has been charged and subsequently recommended for removal from this elected position. If she truly cared for the itegrity of the School Board, she should resign immediately! Anyone who shows support for her to continue in this position is only showing their own shallow thinking and lack of concern for the school system.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

You just don't know the Albany populace very well, Mr. P. In pretty short order there will be half a dozen "posters" here supporting her to the hilt with absurd and incoherent rationale which, if we could really look under the covers, would be solely based on common racial identity.

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Outtahere 1 year, 9 months ago

"If she truly cared she would resign"...... she will never resign because she doesn't care. I CANT WAIT FOR HER TO GO!!

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Moe 1 year, 9 months ago

Pure racism!! This is nothing but a witch hunt!! With Velvet Riggins' leadership, the school system can be number one again!

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GG126 1 year, 9 months ago

Moe, it's obvious you are a phony. Posting this comment in order to stimulate ugly conversation will not work.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

Progressive.......here's your sign!

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Progressive 1 year, 9 months ago

Like I said. Watch the ones that will show support for VR. How can it be #1 again, when it has never been #1 with VR on the Board (and June Bug, Bush and Anita Brown)? These 4 are corrupt and have made a mockery of our school system. It can only change with replacing these 4 ASAP.

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bigbob 1 year, 9 months ago

Ole # 34's name for posting must be Moe. LOL

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fatdaddygamer 1 year, 9 months ago

are you that STUPID? the lady (if see can still be called a lady) steals from tax payers, she falsified government document so she can steal from tax payers. if it where me or you we would have been in prison over a month ago. and what has she done for the schools since she was elected? NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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VSU 1 year, 9 months ago

Say Hello to Larry & Curly for me, and don't forget about Shemp.

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Outtahere 1 year, 9 months ago

AGAIN??? Please, if they haven't been successful yet they NEVER will be. Nice try though.

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whattheheck 1 year, 9 months ago

Well, Deal, let's close the deal!

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

Nathan......the REAL DEAL REAL DEAL!! Gonna DEAL out some REAL DEAL with no APPEAL that will FEEL REAL DEAL-a-rriffic!

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

If you STEAL then you will REEL when the bells PEAL for your last MEAL and you'll hate what you FEEL when there's no APPEAL. Go Nathan DEAL!!

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

I love to rhyme all the time. Check out my rhymes at sisterrubywheelchairrhymes.com

Bookings are available.

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Happy 1 year, 9 months ago

I am saddened as I read these posts. Everyone deserves their day in court. I really don't understand all of this hatred. Instead of inciting hate, I would suggest all of you to pray about this situation and not be so quick to judge.

Empty vessels make the loudest noise.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 9 months ago

I am saddened too but for the children and families being served by the DCSS. What a travesty the board has visited on these students with the hiring of Joshua Murfree and their failure to provide leadership administratively.

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chinaberry25 1 year, 9 months ago

She has already had her day in court. The school system has already spoken. Now the other court will convict her. Of course Clinton got off for lying, so who knows.

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

And praying about it would do what exactly?

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Outtahere 1 year, 9 months ago

I am sad for the low income children that may never receive food assistance because this board member thought it would be okay for her daughter to receive it. By the way, this family was WAY OVER income guidelines for this service!

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MRKIA 1 year, 9 months ago

NOW WE KNOW WHAT THAT LOUD NOISE IS COMING FROM VELVET'S HEAD. THANKS FOR THE INFO.

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fatdaddygamer 1 year, 9 months ago

she is still smiling becouse she knows she is going to get away with it.

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dunk833 1 year, 9 months ago

Are any of you guy a so call christan, if you are you sure are not acting like it. You guy have already been the judge and the jury. Instead of being the way you are, we should be unlifting her up in prayer. So let us judge not, can this church say Aman.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

Yes....Thou Shalt Not Steal...Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness....Thou Shalt Not Covet......do I need to go on?

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

Because praying would accomplish what? What does an amputee praying for healing get? That's right. Nothing. Because when the situation is unambiguous and there is no possibility of coincidence, prayer never works. God never heals amputees. Ever. The answer is always no.

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bubbavet 1 year, 9 months ago

Here we go again. Let's round up all the black so called preachers and get behind her. My oh! My Don't forget you gots ta give mo to got mo.

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

I am both christian and human and sometimes the human comes out more. We are just tired of all of the corruption within the DCSS!!!

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

It isn't "in-human" or "un-christian" to expect (demand) high standards from those in leadership and who have the authority to make decisions which affect us all. People need to understand their whole Bibles, not just snatch a verse or a line from a sermon.

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Clif 1 year, 9 months ago

Albany--what a mess!!!! The more it changes, the more it stays the same!!!! It won't change. There's no real leadership there to change it, not in the school board, not in the city "leaders", not in the county "leaders." You just can't make a silk pursue out of the ear of a pig. I'm glad I moved away.

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terihdfxr1 1 year, 9 months ago

Everybody write Gov. Nathan Deal and advise hiim to make this happen. http://gov.georgia.gov/00/gov/contact_us/0,2657,165937316_166563415,00.html Make an example of her to the rest of the cheaters and scammers here in this town. For the sake of our children we need to clean house in Dougherty county.

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frustrated246 1 year, 9 months ago

I feel anyone no matter who they are or what position they may hold if they commit a crime they should do the time and not be allowed to hold any kind of position of authority again. It is the same when teachers do something illegal, they lose their teaching credentials and cannot teach anymore. If any other person had committed the same type of crime they would have been punished by now. I believe Ms. Riggins should be suspended without pay while her case is being heard. This may sound rough, but she should have thought about this before she did what she did. If you are going to do something illegal you should be prepared to suffer the consequences for your actions.

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MRKIA 1 year, 9 months ago

WHERE ARE THE USUAL RIGGINS CHEERLEADERS? BUBBAVET_RU AND COACH AMONG OTHERS? NEXT STOP? THE BUS STOP. ADIOS VELVET.

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JBruce 1 year, 9 months ago

As is the case in a lot of these types of stories religion and Christianity has been brought into it. Please allow me to clarify a few things: When a person chooses to become a Christian and follow God they are setting a standard in their lives to follow the path of truth and righteousness which is a standard in today's society that many choose to ignore. I am not saying that every Christian succeeds at this 100% of the time, however if they are a committed to Christian values this is their goal. The key word here is forgiveness.

I can assure you that there has only been one to live amongst us without sin and He died so that our sins can be forgiven. Even people with a strong Christan Faith will fail from time to time. It is because we all posses a sinful nature. Christians recognize this and their goal is to stand strong and resist the temptation of the enemy and ask for forgiveness when they fail. Christians are not "better" than anyone else but rather recognize the need to try and live a life that is pleasing to God.

Unfortunately for Ms. Riggins she yielded to the temptation, broke the laws, and now has to face the consequences of her decisions. Whether she has a strong faith or no faith at all she did wrong and will be forced to suffer the consequences of the judicial system.

Hopefully if she is a woman of Faith she will recognize the error of her ways, accept the punishment, and grow from her shortcomings. If she has sincerely asked her Heavenly Father to forgive her He has. Now she must deal with the laws of the state and fulfill their obligations as it pertains to her misgivings.

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

billybob, you must be festering about something. Prayer does work. No, it will not bring a part of your physical body back that has been removed. Prayer heals the heart and helps you to understand and also see things in a different light.

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

Actually, the bible says in many verses that if you ask you will receive. People believe prayer heals cancer, pnuemonia, etc. based on these verses. Verses that are unambiguous, by the way. It does not say ask and it will be done as long as it doesn't violate the laws of nature. But if you do ask for something that is physically impossible like healing an amputee, during a child of Down's Syndrome, having someone with a completely severed spinal cord walk again, the answer is always no. Always. I am festering because people say 'pray about it.' No, don't pray about it. Take action, do something. I could pray to a milk jug and get hits and misses consistent with praying to god. Prayers are "answered" and unanswered" accoring to the scientific laws of probability and nature.

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beartrap 1 year, 9 months ago

basic problem is that we got more morons than taxpayers and morons are electing more morons.....

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Bubbavet_rureel 1 year, 9 months ago

There will not be any comments coming from the Bubbavet_rureel camp at this time. We are waiting for the Gov. Deal decission, stay tune, the decission will be a suprise to all the VR bashers.

The decission like the Obama care decission, will help us move forward with agreeing ti disagree yet maintain harmony and democracy.

VR is okay with what ever the decission is, she know that if the Lord bring you to, he'll bring you through it, the industry that buy the ink by the truck loads, will have something to write about.

Remember, when you plant seeds they will grow, this is why, we should plant positive seeds. Example:

  • If it ant broke, dont try to fix it- seed
  • Give everyone a chance -Obama, Coach, Murfree, Bubbavet - seed
  • Positive - seed
  • Etc...
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waltspecht 1 year, 9 months ago

Better watch out that the seed you planted on the neighbor's back forty doesn't get spotted before you smoke it all up.

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Bubbavet_rureel 1 year, 9 months ago

Check what you're planting, stay positive light-weight.

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Abytaxpayer 1 year, 9 months ago

BVR so you stand is..

• If it ant broke, dont try to fix it- seed

So Riggins misusing funds she is not qualified for is ok in your eyes.

• Give everyone a chance -Obama, Coach, Murfree, Bubbavet – seed

Fool me once shame on you, Fool me twice shame on me.

• Positive – seed

You are the first doper I have ever heard who likes seeds

• Etc...

Bla bla bla = same old Sh** different day.

What you are planting every day is not seeds of love and friendship, but the cow patties that the SEEDS of Hate grow in. So why should the world see you any differently than the mask of BS you hide behind? You and yours will continue to reap what you sow. So keep supporting people with no personal integrity, and lack of honestly but don’t be surprised at the lack of a positive outcome.

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MRKIA 1 year, 9 months ago

YOUR GIRL IS AS GOOD AS GONE AND JUST WAIT UNTIL THE NEW INVESTIGATION INTO THE SCHOOL LUNCH PROGRAM KICKS IN. IF THE "REAL DEAL" IS SENDING THEM WHAT DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO VELVET? FIGURE IT OUT LAME-BRAIN. VELVET PLANTED A BAD SEED.

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

billybob........................it is done in God's time not our time! And, if you believe you believe and if you don't then, well, you just don't believe.

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

Umm. That's not what the bible says.

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jglass 1 year, 9 months ago

So, what does the bible say? God's timing is perfect and His will be done.....not our will. What does it say about prayer and God? Are you saying God or prayer doesn't heal or do anything?

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

Yes that's what I'm saying. You can test it for yourself. Sincerely pray in humility and faith that god will heal an amputee. It will not happen. Ever. It violates the laws of nature. No matter who prays, no matter how sincerely, no matter how humbly. The bible says throughout the New Testament that god will answer prayers. It says with the faith of a mustard seed you can move a mountain. It says it over and over again. It does not qualify these statements. No if it's god's will. No as long as it doesn't violate the laws of nature. Nothing. The claims are unambiguous. And you can prove them to be false. Additionally, I think there are about 6 million Jews who would take exception with your claim that god's timing is perfect.

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MRKIA 1 year, 9 months ago

I'VE BROKEN IT DOWN TO WHAT GOD CAN DO AND WHAT GOD WILL DO. GOD CAN DO ANYTHING, ANY - THING. BUT GOD WILL NOT DO EVERYTHING MAN PRAYS FOR.

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billybob 1 year, 9 months ago

Despite what the bible says in Matthew 17:20, Matthew 21:21, Mark 11:24, John 14:14... I could go on. Or course we could ignore what Jesus says in the bible and go with your methos where every possible outcome could be considered an answered prayer. Of course when you make the circle that big, you may as well be praying to my labrador retriever because the results are the same.

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SuzieQue 1 year, 9 months ago

She should have been removed as soon as this situation came to light...One can only hope that the legal system takes care of everyone in Albany who has blatantly disregarded "the rules" that we all know we should follow. As an Abany "escapee" I am still rooting for things to turn around there and for good triumph over bad.

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MRKIA 1 year, 9 months ago

BUBBAVET_RU: I STARTED TO ASK YOU IF THE CAT HAS YOUR TONGUE THEN I REALIZED THAT I, " MRKIA" HAS YOUR TONGUE. BOW DOWN WHEN IN THE PRESENCE OF SUPERIOR INTELLECT, WHICH IS, BTW 95% OF THE COMMENTERS.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 9 months ago

OK Nathan Deal. Deal it for Real.

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