D.A. sends controversial taxpayer-funded project for potential investigation to state ‘money cop’

Williamson County's D.A. has sent the findings from a WSMV4 investigation revealing an ex-commissioner's intention to benefit from a project to the comptroller.
Published: Jan. 12, 2023 at 5:43 PM CST
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NOLENSVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Williamson County District Attorney Kim Helper has sent the findings from a WSMV4 investigation revealing a former city commissioner’s intention to financially benefit from a $380,000 project she wanted the city to fund to the state comptroller’s office.

That office, referred to as the state’s “money cop,” investigates fraud, abuse and waste of taxpayer-funded projects.

Our investigation found that former Nolensville commissioner Lisa Garramone introduced legislation to build a floodwall, estimated at the time to cost $380,000, to benefit five homes that were recently placed in floodplains by FEMA.

One of those five homes belonged to Garramone.

While Garramone disclosed that in a meeting, she did not reveal what WSMV4 Investigates found: emails that show she pushed the project so she could avoid paying for flood insurance.

Garramone defended her actions in an interview with WSMV4 Investigates where she said when she learned of the cost of the floodwall, she did not want to pay that amount.

The details of the floodwall project were shared with Williamson County District Attorney Kim Helper, who confirms she then sent it on to the comptroller’s office.

A spokesman for comptroller’s office wrote in an email, “The Comptroller’s Office has broad authority to review government entities including the Town of Nolensville. It is our policy to not comment further.”

WSMV4 Investigates will report on if any action is taken by the comptroller’s office.

Nolensville Commissioner Lisa Garramone sits down with WSMV4 Chief Investigative Reporter Jeremy Finley.