Florida Gov. Rick Scott agrees to pay $700,000 to end public records lawsuit | Miami Herald
TALLAHASSEE – Gov. Rick Scott has agreed to spend $700,000 in taxpayer money to settle seven public records lawsuits alleging he and several members of his staff violated state law when they created email accounts to shield their communications from state public records laws and then withheld the documents … … The settlement, first obtained by the Herald/Times Tallahassee bureau, is precedent-setting in that it is the first time in state history that a sitting governor and attorney general have been sued successfully for violations of Florida’s public records laws. It is also the third legal defeat in recent months for the governor, and the second time he has agreed to use state dollars to end a lawsuit against him. Also signing the agreement is Attorney General Pam Bondi.
Governor Scott won’t even disclose how much he and Attorney General Bondi picked Floridians pockets to fight Sunshine suits. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was far more than this $700,000 settlement he just soaked us for.
This emphasizes the need for their to be a constitutional process to impeach or recall scofflaw Florida governors … right now.
But the majority of Florida lawmakers approve of Rick Scott’s lawbreaking. So do our courts.
Tallahasee attorney Steven R. Andrews, who filed one of the public records suits, was quoted in the linked article as saying,
“It is clear this governor has made a calculated decision that violating the constitutional rights is the cost of doing business — a cost he doesn’t have to bear … While these numbers are shocking, you can’t calculate the cost to citizens of the state for government that is operating in darkness. The real costs will be borne in years to come for a government that operates in contempt for fundamental right to records.”
Florida’s legislature and courts intend to let Rick Scott continue to generate darkness, knowing full well that it will lead to Floridians voting against their own best interests on an ongoing basis, keeping the corrupt in control of every aspect of government.
We Floridians owe the little we know about these Sunshine scandals to a California court, which ordered Google to turn over related documents.