A state audit released Monday shows that
officials paid a nonprofit group twice for a 37-acre parcel of
land. But auditors say the expected 8.9 million dollar total
payment is less than half of the land's fair market value.
A nine-year muddle took place over who owned and managed the
Gallants Channel property. The nonprofit Friends of the Museum took
out 5.3 million dollars in mortgages and liens attached
to the land, then couldn't repay all of it.
State auditors say the state helped purchase the property in the
late 1990s and agreed to buy the land again.
The confusion over the property was revealed after the exposure
of legal and financial problems surrounding last summer's Tall
Ships Festival in Beaufort that lost two million dollars.