From the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office
At approximately 2040 hours on 040514, Joseph John Murphy aged 50, tried to make entry into the Augusta National. Mr. Murphy was advised that he was not permitted to enter and left the property. Murphy returned about 10 minutes later in his vehicle. Murphy bypassed the security guard, and was stopped shortly after by a marked Richmond County patrol vehicle. Murphy was arrested without incident and charged with Criminal Trespass. There was no damage to property at the Augusta National. Murphy is not a local resident.
The news that Jim Tar passed away Tuesday morning came as a shock. On a visit to the storefront he was always found in, Veronique Lyle Thurmond and Elizabeth Moretz-Britt were busy moving paintings around on the walls.
“The preacher is very heavy,” Veronique said as they attempted to position the heavy framed painting in a new spot.
“Preacher’s gotta go up two inches,” Elizabeth said, then seconds later… CRASH! The preacher comes down.
As Elizabeth bends over trying to reach the nails, she mutters “..and we’re gonna use two nails from now on, which is the Jim Tar rule.”
Customers filter in and out. Their steps make the entire floor shake as usual, which causes the wind chimes to chime, as usual.
“What are you doing with that?” Veronique asks Elizabeth. “I’m centering it above the preacher.”
“Oh my God, that’s the hardest one to get up there.”
No, the preacher was the hardest one. Okay, if you say so. The preacher was heavier. It needs to go a little bit to the right.
This Sunday, Jim would have turned 63. He was a settled soul who meant a lot to those who knew him. Kristen Varn and Jim met in the mid ’80s when Art on Broad was by the fountain on Riverwalk.
A customer asks what their new project is.
“Veronique had the wonderful idea of putting Jim up here. Isn’t that great?” answers Elizabeth. “It’s where he belongs. He never wanted to be up front but, sorry Jim, you can’t stop me now buddy boy. I used to say to him periodically, ‘Jim, we need to get some of your paintings up here.’ And he would say (imitates gruff voice), “Nope. No, back here, I’m in the back.”
To a great friend to many, the love of Kristen’s life, a true artist in every sense of the word. Jim, we’ll never forget you.
March 6, 2014
Columbia and Richmond Counties will be reimbursed 75% of eligible expenditures and damage costs related to the recent “End Of Days” Ice Storm and Earthquake.
The Guv stated “The winter weather that overtook our state in mid-February caused millions of dollars’ worth of damage in many parts of our state, blah blah blah.” We’re paraphrasing but after the past few weeks we’re pretty sick of listening to politicians. Sorry.
The 39 counties are: Columbia and Richmond.
And 37 others.
Bartow, Cherokee, Cobb, Dawson, DeKalb, Forsyth, Paulding, Polk and White counties were included in The Guv’s request but not granted assistance due to not meeting the per capita threshold of $3.50 per person. So suck on that Forsyth County.
Fat Man’s Mill Café
Truck: 1995 Ford
Former life: Rooster’s Beak food truck
Brad Usry, owner of Fat Man’s , says adding a food truck component to his already popular Fat Man’s Mill Cafe was “cheaper than building another restaurant.” Having toyed with the idea for a while, he jumped at the chance when the former Rooster’s Beak food truck became available.
“We have four basic menus set up for the truck: soul food, barbecue, grilled cheese and what we call carnival food, which is what we’re doing at the Spring Fest. Hamburgers, hotdogs, mac and cheese, French fries and chicken fingers, plus maybe a barbecue sandwich with slaw and sauce. We’ll be pulling our grill behind us so we’ll cook the burgers outside.”
Usry says the biggest learning curve of operating a food truck has been prep.
“The most challenging thing I think is having everything you need when you get there,” he explained. “Here at the restaurant, everything has a place and we know where it is. Making sure we have every last little thing we need on the truck is tough.”
Laziza Mediterranean Grill
Truck: 1995 Chevrolet
Former life: Frito Lay delivery van
Laziza Mediterranean Grill’s food truck is a 1995 Chevrolet that was originally a Frito Lay delivery truck. Purchased last year in South Carolina, it was a basic white empty shell that ran well. The entire kitchen had to be built from scratch.
Business partner Leigh Fletcher explained the process of running the truck.
“We keep it plugged into the restaurant we start cooking in the truck early in the morning. We prep in the restaurant kitchen and cook on the truck.”
The menu at the Spring Fest will be shawarma, (basically the Middle Eastern term for gyro), falafel, gyro or spicy shwarma wrap.
Kitchen 1454/Taco Rico
Truck: 2003 Freightliner
Former life: Snap On Tools van
Ed Mendoza, owner of Kitchen 1454, purchased his food truck in Charlotte, North Carolina. It’s a 2003 Freightliner that is a former Snap On Tools truck, which explains the 1,600 pound lift on the back.
“I like it because it is so big,” Mendoza said. “Two or three people can work it comfortably.”
When Mendoza purchased the truck, it had already been converted into the “Taco Rico” truck. Following the truck’s theme, Saturday he’ll be serving a bulgogi taco, which is a Korean taco, a traditional Tex-Mex taco and a vegetarian taco.
Crums on Central
Truck: Fifth Wheel
Former Life: Recreational Trailer
In 2012, Andrew Crumrine thought about opening another restaurant in Columbia County with an Italian theme. Because of the economy and the gas shortages at the time, however, he decided to put all his energy into Crums on Central and getting his food truck up and running.
At the time, he only used it for off-site catering but, now, you can find it many weekends at the Indian Queen, serving food to the bar patrons there.
“It’s got as much equipment in it as the restaurant,” he said in 2012. “Actually, it’s got more. It’s got a flat top and we don’t have a flat top in the restaurant. Isn’t that crazy?”
At the ETCP Spring Fest, Crumrine will serve many of the favorites his food truck has become known for: bratwurst, French fries, boiled peanuts and the Jiffy Pig, which is pulled pork, crunchy peanut butter, cilantro and onions with a sweet chili sauce.
In addition to these four food trucks, the ETCP Spring Fest will feature other food vendors, including the barbecue cook team and caterer Jus’ Plain Smokin’ run by John and Joshua Paugh. Related to slain deputy JD Paugh, these guys cook good ole Southern barbecue and are based in Hephzibah.
Kona Ice will also be their serving tropical shaved ice and bringing along their patented FlavorWave, their top 10 flavors that customers can mix and match at will. In addition, Kona also has 50 custom flavors their employees can create for customers.
And for those who want a sweet treat, Neapolitan Cupcake will be on hand, serving a variety of the signature and seasonal cupcakes that have made them famous across the CSRA. Will they have Ooey Gooey Butter Poundcake, Salted Caramel or Key Lime Pie? You’ll just have to come and find out.
Tax Commissioner Kay Allen and her husband, District 3 Columbia County Commissioner Charles Allen, are no longer a political powerhouse.
In a deal negotiated behind closed doors with the Columbia County Board of Commissioners, the Allens both agreed to resign from their positions effective immediately.
For months, allegations that Kay Allen improperly profited from tax collection contracts with Harlem and Grovetown hung over Columbia County like a dark cloud.
Local attorney Jack Long, who represented the Allens during the March 4 meeting, told the Columbia County Board of Commissioners that both Kay and Charles Allen felt it was in the best interests of the county if they stepped down.
With a vote of 4-0, the board accepted the retirement of Kay Allen and the resignation of Charles Allen. Neither of the Allens attended the meeting.
“On behalf of Charles and Kay Allen, I would like to say that Charlie and Kay Allen have had the privilege of calling Columbia County home for all of their lives,” Long said. “The people of Columbia County are their friends and neighbors. They are grateful to them for having allowed them to serve in public office for a total of over 40 years.”
Due to the fact that Charles Allen was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer, Long said both Kay and Charles Allen did not plan to run for re-election.
“In light of the medical conditions, they each intended to make this their last terms in office,” Long told the commissioners. “They had hoped to complete their terms as public servants to Columbia County and then step down gracefully into retirement.”
But as the controversy surrounding Kay Allen began to mount last year, Long said the couple realized their dispute with the county had “erupted into a full scale political and legal battle.”
“Throughout their terms in public office, they have both tried to give their highest priority to the needs of their constituents,” Long said. “With that in mind, it is clear to both Charles and Kay Allen that it would not be in the best interests of the citizens of Columbia County or for their families for this battle to continue.”
Therefore, the Allens have decided to “jointly retire from public office,” Long said.
In doing so, Long said the Allens hoped the “healing process” could begin for Columbia County.
“They hope their resignation will allow all of the elected officials to turn their full attention back to serving the county citizens,” Long said.
“At the same time, I would like to express my appreciation to the Allens for their decision to forgo any further litigation and to call an end to this as far as Columbia County is concerned,” Cross said. “I will note that we don’t know what is going on with the other (law enforcement and governmental) agencies and we have no control over that.”
Columbia County Commissioner Trey Allen added that he respected the Allens for their decision to step down from office.
“I’d like to say, I appreciate and respect, especially with the clarity of the last five years of being in public service, anyone who is willing to offer themselves up,” Trey Allen said. “And with all their years of dedicated service, I appreciate both Charles Allen and Kay Allen for their service.”
It is time for Columbia County to move on to the “business of the people” and on to “better days,” Trey Allen added.
As painful as this ending is for the Allens, Cross said it is equally uncomfortable for the entire commission.
“There is never any joy in a situation such as this,” Cross said. “The solution or the ending of it is good for the citizens of Columbia County and this has been our No. 1 interest since the beginning. These things occur and they have to be dealt with. They are not at all any pleasant part of our duties.”
Two weeks ago, members of the Columbia County Board of Commissioners told Kay Allen, in no uncertain terms, it was time for her to pack her bags and go.
First, the Columbia County commissioners voted 4-0 to instruct attorneys representing the county to move forward with efforts to recover any monies that Kay Allen may have “wrongfully withheld.”
This after commissioners patiently waited for the FBI to conclude its joint investigation with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office.
But after months of investigating the matter, Kay Allen has yet to be charged with any crime.
As far as when and if law enforcement will act on the issues surrounding Kay Allen, Cross told the public on Feb. 21 that any pending charges are still unknown.
“The time has long passed for a resolution in this matter,” Cross said on Feb. 21. “It is the opinion of this body that Mrs. Allen’s actions have compromised her ability to effectively serve the citizens of the county. In the best interest of our citizens, the county has retained counsel to explore its options regarding filing an action against Tax Commissioner Allen to recover any money she may have wrongly withheld.”
Commissioner Trey Allen was the first to officially state that he believed Kay Allen should step down from her position as tax commissioner.
“In my opinion, the position that we find ourselves dealing with in this situation and the seriousness of the allegations, again in my opinion, I think it resulted in the loss of public confidence in the office of the tax commissioner,” Trey Allen said on Feb. 21. “And I think it is appropriate at this time for the tax commissioner to step aside from her official duties.”
All of this came after weeks of waiting for some resolution in the matter.
Columbia County commissioners had sent a letter to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal two days before Christmas asking him to look into alleged misconduct by Kay Allen.
The Dec. 23 letter to the governor was direct and upfront about the allegations against Kay Allen.
“In October of this year, the Columbia County Commission was informed of a situation that involved the Tax Commissioner collecting fees from municipalities contrary to law,” the commissioners wrote. “Specifically, we discovered Columbia County Tax Commissioner Kay K. Allen contracted with the cities of Grovetown and Harlem personally and collected a fee which she retained as personal compensation that should have been remitted to the county.”
The Columbia County commissioners laid everything out on the table.
“In 2013, this fee totaled $36,000 but since 2009 the monies exceed $160,000,” the letter stated. “Until this revelation, the commission had no knowledge of this arrangement and it was never reflected on any weekly or monthly reports she submitted.”
The letter stated if the accusations against Allen are accurate, it is clearly in violation of a 2007 amendment to Georgia law which stated, “The governing authority, not the tax commissioner, may contract with municipalities to accept, receive and retain compensation if the county had more than 50,000 parcels.”
The board acknowledged that Columbia County met that threshold in 2009.
“While this had been the practice for many years, we understand that the Tax Commissioner was made aware of the change in law in 2007 at a state training conducted by the Georgia Department of Revenue,” the letter stated. “Notwithstanding this training, each year beyond 2009, allegedly she has collected these fees by preparing hand-written invoices that were delivered to the municipalities by her personally.”
And it appeared that Kay Allen was personally profiting from these fees, the Columbia County commissioners wrote the governor.
“The checks for these fees were written to Columbia County Tax Commissioner attention Kay Allen, but were deposited into her personal account,” the letter to the governor stated. “Both municipalities assumed the payments to the Tax Commissioner were going to the governing authority according to law.”
The investigation into Allen’s alleged misconduct apparently began after former Chief Deputy Tax Commissioner Dwight Johnson, who was fired in October, met with the FBI.
Johnson, an employee of the tax commissioner’s office for 15 years, claims that his relationship with Kay Allen began deteriorating after he admitted to her that he was planning on running for the tax commissioner’s seat in 2016.
Johnson’s termination form states he was fired because Allen held him responsible for a missing bank bag that allegedly contained $55 that never made it the Evans government center from the Appling office in July.
None of those allegations are true, Johnson told the Metro Spirit last year.
When asked how long he was aware of allegations that Allen was personally profiting from the contracts with Harlem and Grovetown, Johnson said Steve Adams, then an employee in the accounting division of the tax commissioner’s office, informed him a few years ago that he had some concerns about the manner in which the money was being collected.“It said that I misappropriated $55 in a bank bag and had coerced an employee to lie for me,” Johnson told the Metro Spirit. “It also said that I was belligerent to her or disrespectful to her. Which, none of that is true.”
Therefore, Johnson said that he asked Kay Allen about some of Adams’ concerns.
“She said, ‘Oh, (Steve Adams) doesn’t know what he’s talking about. I have a right to that money. Or I have the right to give that money to my staff,’” Johnson said. “And I said, ‘What do you mean?’ She said, ‘Well, I can either take the money for myself or I can distribute the money for collecting the tax digest for the cities to my staff.’”
Considering the office’s “frontline” employees weren’t paid very much, Johnson asked Kay Allen if she could use the money to increase those employees’ salaries.
“It was like I slapped her in the face,” Johnson said in December. “She got upset about that. And she basically said she collects it, she is the tax commissioner and she decides where it goes. So, I left it alone.”
When Adams continued to ask questions about which county fund these checks should be deposited in, Johnson said Kay Allen directed all of those checks to be delivered to Johnson’s mailbox instead.
“This is what threw up a red flag for me,” Johnson told the Metro Spirit. “She told me, ‘From now on, I’m going to move this to your mailbox and when you get these checks, just put them on my desk, but don’t open them.’”
When the checks arrived, Johnson immediately knew they were from the other municipalities for Kay Allen.
“She loves writing in green ink and there was always the word, ‘confidential,’ written in green on the envelopes,” Johnson said. “So, she would send the municipalities envelopes for them to mail her the checks back. I don’t know the frequency of the checks. I just know every once in a while I would see that ‘confidential’ envelope and I would stick it on her desk and she would never say a word about it.”
Ironically, Adams was sworn in as the new deputy tax chief in December
Late last year, Cross told the Metro Spirit he only wished the county commission learned of the allegations against Allen sooner.
“I wish we had some inkling before that it was going on because we had so many people who were deceived,” he said. “The cities thought they were paying to the county and the county was handling it according to law. The cities made the checks out properly, but the checks never made it to the county.”
When Johnson finally approached Cross and his colleagues with the allegations against Kay Allen, Cross said he encouraged Johnson to speak with law enforcement.
“He came to us and we said, ‘You either go to the authorities or you are going to be grouped in with any wrongdoing that goes on because you’ve been there,’” Cross said.
“It is just unfortunate.”
Hello to the 3rd Annual Metro Spirit Spring Fest presented by Windsor Fine Jewelers!Saturday, March 8 at the Lady A Amphitheater in Evans noon-7. The festival keeps growing and growing…this year we have food trucks from Crums, Fat Man’s, Lazizza and Kitchen 1454. We also have BBQ by Jus Plain Smokin’, and treats from Kona Ice and Neapolitan Cupcakes.Last year’s event featured over 15 craft beers. This year is no different. We also have a great line up of music noon. We haven’t finalized the scheduling yet, but here are our artists:
Bennett Boswell (Bluegrass legend Little Roy’s grandson)
Kenny George Band
John Hearn/Drew Albenesius
Tim Cadiere and Washboard Road Band
Brian Kathol (performing Merle and Waylon)
Our headliner is going to be a blast. We’re throwing a bunch of great performers on stage who have worked together for years and letting them have at it. Some of the guys are:
Henry Wynn, Jr.
ID armbands are $5. 20% of the net proceeds are going to Jordan’s House, a charity in honor of Jordan White, publisher Joe White’s daughter. Jordan’s House has one simple mission; place art teachers in Richmond County elementary schools. We are picking up where the Art Factory left off.
Next Saturday Noon-7 at the Lady A. Thanks to GRU, First Bank, Taylor BMW, GSP and Evans Dermatology!
Our media partners are Kicks 99, BOB FM, HD 98.3, WGAC and 95 Rock.
As the trucks make their way through your neighborhoods gobbling up what is left of your tree limbs you may be wondering what is happening with all this stuff.The trucks move quickly loading from one house to another with two monitors from O’Brien’s close behind.When the debris filled trucks arrive at the dumping site across the Lady A, they hand the workers a load ticket and wait in line. Tracking of the yield is for FEMA’s purposes. FEMA will reimburse the companies based on yardage haul. The empty trucks have already been scanned and placed into the system as a reference point on how much it can manage fully loaded. When the loaded truck comes in, the driver passes slowly under the scanner and the system automatically calculates the load. Two men in a scissor lift also visually inspect the trailers from above to manually calculate what percentage of waste the trailer is carrying.
As of Saturday, there were roughly 25 trucks on the job. This highly synchronized system runs until 6 PM daily.
Wednesday, June 11th Panic finally returns to Augusta. They played the Jessye Norman Amphitheater in 96 and the Bell in 97. Before that they reached that level they often played in Augusta as an Athens based band on the rise.
This summer they will be performing at the James Brown Arena. Get your patchouli ready!
As the “I need Masters tickets” and “Badges wanted” signs are already beginning to pop up around the Augusta area, a scandal has just rocked a local ticket brokering business.
Late last week, Rick Owings, member of Best Golf Experiences, LLC sent his clients a letter with earth-shattering news.
“It is with the deepest regret that I must inform each of you as quickly as possible of a catastrophic situation affecting both Best Golf Experiences, LLC and myself, and in turn having a serious impact to each of you,” the Feb. 21 letter from Owings begins. “I have been victimized by fraud by the owner of the prior company.”
In the letter, Owings states he is immediately notifying all of his clients in order to afford them the greatest amount of time to make “alternative arrangements” for this year’s Masters tournament.
“Best Golf Experiences, LLC has sustained significant financial losses as a result of a consultants’ theft of hundreds of thousands of dollars coupled with significant added consequential costs and damages,” the Feb. 21 letter states.
Owings insists that the individual responsible for fraudulent behavior is not any of the current employees, but the previous owner of Best Golf Experiences, LLC.
“Based on the aforementioned discoveries of fraud and damage sustained, Best Golf’s lender has this week elected to foreclose on all its secured interests and sweep all cash on hand which has now forced Best Golf Experiences, LLC to close,” Owings stated in the letter.
Best Golf Experiences, LLC is apparently out of money and officially “out of business,” Owings states.
“I intend to pursue all legal remedies available to me for the losses I have sustained pursuant to the owner of the prior company as he is the cause of this all now taking place as direct result of fraud,” Owings writes. “We relied on the owner of the prior company to our collective detriment; if he had fully disclosed these material facts, none of these losses would have ever occurred. I never would have purchased the prior owner’s company had he fully disclosed all the facts to me.”
Clearly, these are some harsh allegations that Owings is making against the previous owner. Sources close to the situation say the prior owner, Danny Williams, is a very well-respected businessman in the Augusta community. He was in the ticket brokering business for many years and had well-established relationships with some impressive clients such as Rolex and Aflac.
About three years ago, Williams decided to sell his ticket brokering business, then called Sports Venture, to the new owners with the contingency that he would stay on for the next three consecutive years.
Following the purchase, the new owners changed the name of the business to Best Golf Experiences, LLC.
Ever since Owings’ letter was sent out to Best Golf Experiences, LLC’s clients on Feb. 21, Williams has been unable to respond to the allegations because he was overseas on a trip to Australia.
Several sources involved in other local ticket brokering businesses, who wished to remain anonymous, have told the Metro Spirit that Williams is furious over Owings’ allegations and wishes he never met the new owners of the business.
However, unfortunately for Williams, this is still the third year of his agreement with Best Golf Experiences, LLC and, therefore, he might be left holding the bag.
But even more painful is the fact that the business he spent so many years building has clearly been destroyed.
Even Best Golf Experiences, LLC’s website, www.bestgolfexperiences.com, brags about the 17-year legacy of this ticket brokering business.
“It was founded by and is owned and operated by Augusta natives who have the experience to plan and coordinate memorable and stress-free golfing experiences,” the website states. “We have worked with major corporations worldwide and can provide references upon request. Our Masters golf packages can be customized for specific days and include everything you need to make your visit to the Masters truly memorable.”
The website also pushes the company’s connections with the owners of some of the finest homes in Augusta.
“In what has to be one of the most unique arrangements for any major sporting event in the world, many of the finest homes in the area are made available every year to guests of the Masters Tournament,” the website states. “This tradition was the result of need. It was a match made in, shall we say, the Amen Corner.”
The website states that Best Golf Experiences, LLC can serve everyone from the needs of large corporations to famous celebrities.
“Our clients include the most particular homeowners in Augusta, as well as tournament guests seeking home rentals,” the website states. “Due to our reputation and close ties to the community, we have a database of more than 500 homes of all sizes to fit every budget, from luxury townhouses to sprawling mansions.”
As far as Owings’ statement to his clients, the bottom line seems to indicate whatever these clients have already paid to Best Golf Experiences, LLC is likely gone.
“A trustee is being assigned shortly to manage the process for all clients and homeowners as unsecured creditors,” Owings writes in his Feb. 21 letter. “The trustee will provide a detail of accounting for all outstanding balances due resulting from the foreclosure and sweeping of the cash on hand.”
Owings, who has been described as being a well-organized and proficient businessman by those in the industry, reiterated in his letter that he was not personally responsible for the “catastrophic” situation.
“Tragically, these events are not within the ability of Best Golf Experiences, LLC or me to control,” Owings stated in his Feb. 21 letter. “The fraud by the owner of the prior company has destroyed Best Golf Experiences as well as me personally; I have been victimized and fully understand that it is severely damaging to each of you as well.”
Owings did not return numerous calls seeking comment.
Richmond County sheriff’s Lt. Lewis Blanchard, who also happens to be the president of Executive Marketing Services which provides clients with lodging and tickets to sporting events, said he is unaware of the owners or a representative from Best Golf Experiences, LLC filing any kind of complaint of fraud with the sheriff’s department.
“To the best of my knowledge, nobody has filed anything with us as of yet,” Blanchard said. “Now, that doesn’t mean that it is probably not forthcoming because it is almost a normal occurrence every two or three years for companies that do stuff like that.”
In fact, just last year a Canadian entertainment events company filed a federal lawsuit against a local firm, Mullins Management, claiming that it violated a 2013 contract to provide 100 Masters tickets to the Ontario-based company.
The Canadian company was seeking at least $1.3 million in compensatory and punitive damages, according to its 2013 lawsuit.
Blanchard said the best way individuals can protect themselves against fraud — not only when seeking Masters tickets, but tickets to any other sporting event — is to make sure a ticket brokering business is licensed and bonded.
“I don’t think it’s just Augusta per say. There are companies all across America in this business, whether it is the Super Bowl, the U.S. Open, the Final Four, a lot of those companies come and go and they do multiple events,” Blanchard said. “You want to make sure the company that you deal with is licensed and bonded, of course. That’s really the only protection you have.”
One of the main individuals that several sources close to the situation are blaming for Best Golf Experiences, LLC’s downfall is local ticket broker who used to work with Williams. He is said to have been the “boots on the ground guy” at Sports Venture. Apparently, the company rented the Simon’s Formalwear facility in National Hills two years ago as its headquarters for Masters Week and rented the old bank drive-through in front of National Hills Shopping Center this past year.
Several sources close to the situation, who also wished to be unnamed in the story, have said this particular local ticket broker took deposits of $2,500 to $2,700 for badges last year. Then, suddenly, the tickets began selling for around $3,500.
For each ticket sold, the company was allegedly upside down in the deal. After last year’s tournament, sources say this broker abruptly left the company amidst allegations of ticket fraud and failure to deliver badges and tickets he had promised.
Rumor is that due to this broker’s actions, some ticket providers were forced to pay upwards of $7,000 per badge last year just to cover their obligations.
The Metro Spiritattempted to contact this particular local broker seeking a comment regarding the closure of Best Golf Experiences, LLC, but he did not return any phone calls.
Several sources within the ticket brokering business have said the company was forced to roll the losses from 2013 into this year and the owners of Best Golf Experiences, LLC have allegedly taken deposits (one source reports a figure of between $750,000 and $1 million) for houses reserved for large corporations and yet they have not paid the homeowners or ticket holders.
Best Golf Experiences, LLC has now allegedly taken money from clients and turned around and declared themselves out of business.
How does all of this impact the rest of us?
All of this chaos has driven the price of Masters tickets up this year. Ticket prices are currently in a state of flux. As news of this scandal spreads, ticket brokers predict it is going to cause people to panic and completely rattle the entire business.
Word on the street is that the big ticket brokers are already aware of the scandal because they quickly realized Best Golf Experiences, LLC was going bust.
And, what about Best Golf Experiences, LLC’s clients who had put money down for some tickets and lodging?
As far as a legal remedy for those out of money, the news isn’t good: Unless you have a written contract in place, experts say there is not much you can do about it.
It’s sort of like the drug business. It’s a handshake deal.