Gray Fire Chief warns people about EMA fundraiser

Gray fire chief warns of EMA fundraiser

Gray Fire Chief Max Wood is upset after a man knocked on his door over the weekend claiming to be fundraising for the county's EMA department.   

WMAZ reached out to Max Wood on Monday, but he declined to comment any further. He instead referred us back to his post online.

Wood's post on Saturday says a man named Joel Lowerly with Jones County EMA asked for a donation for fire and rescue equipment. 

Wood says Lowerly told him they keep 50 percent of what they collect and that certain firefighters are given trips to Six Flags. 

Wood says when he told the man he was Gray's fire chief, the man "couldn't leave fast enough.”

This got us thinking about people who fundraise door to door, and how you can make sure you know where your money is going.

Captain Guy Mosteller with the Jones County Sheriff's Office says they ask for people who are collecting door-to-door to call their office and let them know when they will be going around neighborhoods.

“The chief law enforcement officer of the county, which would be Sheriff Reece. You know they’re supposed to be aware of any kind of raffle going on. Not necessarily some kind of raffle permit you have to get, but you just have to make them aware of it so that we know that there's something going on,” said Mosteller. 

As far as what to do if someone comes to your door, Mosteller says there are certain items you can look for. 

“Ask them for their ID. Ask them to provide proof of who they’re taking up donations for. They should have a flyer. They should have a card. They should have something that you can call and verify a number through,” says Mosteller.

He says you can always wait and donate later if you're unsure of their credentials.

WMAZ reached out to Don Graham, the Jones County EMA Director, but he did not call us back.

He did comment on Wood's Facebook post, however, saying that on behalf of the department, he supports the program 100 percent.

As far as the comment that the money raised paid for trips to Six Flags, Graham said, “Not on my watch." 

Lowerly also responded back on the Facebook post and said he was working for a company named Excalibur Central.

According to the Better Business Bureau website, that company is based in Macon but is not accredited by the bureau.
 

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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