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Surry County Commissioner questions YVEDDI’s practices

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SURRY COUNTY, N.C.-- Misuse of funds and employee complaints are just some of the issues Vice Chairman Paul Johnson says The Yadkin Valley Economic Development District is guilty of.

Now, the State Bureau of Investigation is investigating the non-profit for embezzlement.

Johnson, who also volunteers on YVEDDI's board, believes the misuse of funds started two years ago. He says YVEDDI receives around $700,000 a year in federal and state funding, which is dispersed to a number of programs in Surry County, like the senior center.

"I mean things [their problems] just went from bad to worse," Johnson said.

YVEDDI's Interim Director Kathy Payne is disputing Johnson's claims. Payne says the organization had several recent audits including one last year, and nothing was found.

"We had a personnel issue, but there has been no misuse of funds," Payne said.

Johnson feels with this recent controversy, Surry County should sever its ties with the non-profit and look for funding with other entities.

YVEDDI was established in the 1960's. The non-profit also provides services to Stokes, Yadkin and Davie Counties.