The Ocean Shores/North Beach Chamber of Commerce has suspended operations pending a police investigation of the group’s financial matters, according to a notice distributed by Trey Smith, the secretary/treasurer of the chamber board.
In a letter widely distributed in the community and shared on social media, Smith refers to “rumors, gossip, innuendos, and misinformation swirling around the Ocean Shores/North Beach Chamber of Commerce,” and said he was asked, with agreement from the board, to look at the organization’s books, but after three weeks of doing so said he is unable to find definitive figures because the financial records are disorganized.
Smith said that from what he found, he gathers the chamber has less than $1,000 in its account and as much as $18,000 in unpaid bills. “In other words, we are sinking in debt!!,” he said.
Some of the bills are a year old, he said. He pointed out that the prior chamber executive director resigned effective July 1, and a new one was only recently named. The problems predate the new executive director, he said.
Smith said records have been turned over to Ocean Shores police, who, he said, are looking into the problems.
” … We find ourselves in an untenable position and the future of the OSNB Chamber looks bleak,” Smith wrote. “The new (executive director) resigned and the current Board will schedule a membership meeting to collectively determine the fate of the Chamber.”