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Wednesday May 6th, 2015 7:42AM

New Hope owners respond to GBI probe

By B.J. Williams News Director
GAINESVILLE - Owners of a counseling service that provides services for drug accountability courts in north Georgia say their team's image has been tarnished by a GBI investigation into their spending practices.

Kimberly Waters-Rose and Christine Zurblis of New Hope Counseling LLC issued a press statement through their lawyer Saturday, saying that they believe they are the "victims of a very unfortunate misunderstanding over our accounting and use of supplies and equipment secured under two state grants."

The statement indicated that the two grants totaled $160,000 and the distribution of about $15,000 worth of equipment (furniture, computers equipment and paper products) is in question.

According to the press statement, Water-Rose and Zurblis believe the confusion over the use of the equipment has come because New Hope operates out of three offices (Gainesville, Cumming and Dawsonville) and some of the equipment was being stored in an office not specifically tied to the drug accountability courts for which the grants were written.

Enotah Superior Court Judge Raymond George asked the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to become involved earlier in the month. See link to earlier story.

A spokeswoman for the GBI announced the searches of the Gainesville and Cumming offices last week, but did not discuss the findings of the searches.

Waters-Rose and Zurblis noted in the statement that they serve nearly 200 clients through their work with the drug accountability courts in north Georgia.
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