The Washington Police Department is still investigating a potential criminal mismanagement  of the Washington Chamber of Commerce funds that occurred in late October. 





In October, Deputy Chief Don Volk said then Washington Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Carol Hamilton was a “person of interest” in the investigation.


 

 

 

The Washington Police Department is still investigating a potential criminal mismanagement  of the Washington Chamber of Commerce funds that occurred in late October. 


In October, Deputy Chief Don Volk said then Washington Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Carol Hamilton was a “person of interest” in the investigation.


Hamilton, who is no longer with the chamber, was in charge of managing the money raised from certain events during the year, such as the Cherry Festival and Chamber of Commerce Banquet.


Volk said the investigation has yet to turn anything up.


“There’s not a whole lot new going on,” Volk said. “We’re still going through documents provided by banks and lending institutions. We’re trying to make headway. The investigation is still pending and ongoing.”


Candy Liggin, office manager and membership specialist for the chamber, said the chamber has been taking steps to make sure nothing similar happens again.


Shortly after the investigation began, the chamber instituted three different committees to look at how the chamber was run and ways to make it better.


The results from those committees will be available to the board and members of the public at the January meeting.


“There was a group looking at bylaws and policies and procedures that need to be in place along with personnel job descriptions,” Liggin said. “There’s a final draft but nothing has been approved yet.”


Liggin said the board has rallied around the situation.


“Considering the events that happened, (the board has) really stepped up to the plate and is taking care of things,” Liggin said. “There are procedures in place now that are very beneficial to this office.”


She assures community members and businesses that the board is doing everything it can to get back on track.


“We continue to serve our membership to the best of our ability like we always have,” Liggin said.


Of the 270-plus businesses that are members, Liggin said there have not been that many who expressed concern or indecision in joining or staying with the chamber because of the current situation, according to Liggin.


“Overall, membership has been extremely supporting of the chamber, and expressed things like ‘Washington needs a chamber and we’re going to support it,’” Liggin said.


“There are definitely policies and procedures now in place that will be very effective in keeping something of this nature from happening again.”