Local agencies receive previously unclaimed money


MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Some unclaimed money the state was holding is now in the hands of local agencies that were due to get that money.

In February, News13 reported about unclaimed money due to local governments and community agencies, including the Johnsonville Rescue Squad and the Murrells Inlet Garden City Fire Department. Since then, the state treasurer’s office has continued to give out two to three million dollars from the unclaimed property fund each month.

Of the $3 million that made its way to the rightful owners in March, the town of Lake View claimed nearly $80,000 of that money. The rescue squad in Johnsonville and the fire department in Murrells Inlet also got money in March shortly after the News13 report.

“It was simple. Anybody could do that,” said Chief Tom Redmond at the Johnsonville Rescue Squad. “We recovered about a thousand dollars, a little over a thousand dollars. It took us probably 15 to 20 days to recover the money. All I had to do was write a letter, show documentation – federal tax i.d. number and all – and they sent the money right on to us.”

At the Murrells Inlet Garden City Fire Department it was a similar experience.

“We received $1,408.74 that we didn’t know we had coming to us, and now we got it,” Chief Norman Knight said.

After Knight filled out the online form, the state treasurer’s office did call to get a clarification, but it was a minor hiccup, and his department got a check by mid-March.

“Anytime you deal with the state, you have the expectation that you’re going to get the runaround,” Knight said. “[But] I was well pleased with how it turned out. It wasn’t a long drawn out thing.”

Redmond said he will watch the state’s unclaimed property database regularly to continue claiming money due to the rescue squad.

“You have to be on your “p’s & q’s” and watch for it – a thousand dollars more in the budget thanks to you.”

To check the database of unclaimed property in South Carolina, visit the state treasurer’s website.

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