Paine College President Meets With City Again

AUGUSTA — Augusta city leaders are trying to come up with a plan to help out Paine College.

The school’s president, Dr. Samuel Sullivan, met with the city administrator Friday morning.

Paine College’s financial deadline is looming.

The historically black college still owes more than $2 million dollars to vendors.

Dr. Sullivan said the school needs to show the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools it’s back on track.

“We have to submit a report in February that explains the fact that we have met the requirements for compliance for the four remaining sanctions we have,” Dr. Sullivan said.

Now Paine College is hoping the city of Augusta will be able to help.

“We view this as a community effort. Everybody needs to be involved. Certainly, Paine asked that the local government get involved and we see our role as coming to the table and help bring other key players to the table,” City Administrator Janice Jackson said.

Jackson says it’s important for the city to get involved with any organization that will better the community.

“In this particular case, we have an educational institution, but also a business too. They are an employer. They bring people into the region. They are an economic driver in our community,” Jackson said.

She says a number hasn’t been discussed yet, but she will provide a recommendation to the commission in the next couple of weeks.

The city attorney has already looked into whether a donation or loan would be legal.

“We provide money to a number of nonprofit organizations throughout the community. Of course, there are standards that would have to be met, in terms of reviewing audit reports and things like that. We request that type of financial information from any organization we provide assistance to,” Jackson said.

Some Augusta commissioners have shown concern about giving money to Paine College because then other nonprofits would ask for help as well.

We did reach out to Paine College about Friday’s meeting, but we haven’t heard back yet.

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