By Philippe Buteau
Former North Miami Mayor Andre Pierre has agreed to pay more than $7,000 stemming from using a city athletic field for his private soccer club without paying any rent, as required by a city rule, according to a settlement with the county’s ethics commission.
Between October 2009 and January 2012, “Mayor Pierre solicited free use of city-owned facilities without paying fees that are required by other similar groups, and he neglected to disclose the value of the use of the soccer fields on financial disclosure forms,’’ the Miami-Dade County Commission on Ethics and Public Trust said in a statement Thursday.
Pierre, who could not be reached for comment Friday, did not contest the charges, the Ethics Commission said. He will pay a fine of $500, investigative costs of $4,634.70 to the Ethics Commission, as well as reimburse the City of North Miami $2,181.72 — for a total of $7,316.42. He will also receive a Letter of Instruction.
A Miami Herald investigation in April 2012 reported that Pierre reserved the North Miami Athletic Stadium, 2555 NE 151st St., for private soccer practice 78 times from October 2009 to September 2011. Based on the city’s regular rates, the rentals would have cost around $29,000.