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Scott facing three complaints on campaign plane use

Democrats are filing three complaints Thursday with the Commission on Ethics and the Florida Elections Commission that accuse Gov. Rick Scott of violating the law by not fully reporting his campaign's frequent use of an aircraft owned by a company in his wife's name.

All three complaints follow a report in the Herald/Times last month in which Scott's campaign did not list any expenditures for the use of the Cessna Citation Excel jet that has taken him all over the country to fund-raising and campaign events since he officially became a candidate for re-election last December.

The complaints are being filed by Alejandro Victoria, 22, of Kissimmee, a recent political science graduate at Florida State who is active as a volunteer in Democratic politics.

"I wanted to hold Rick Scott accountable to not be above the law," Victoria said. "I think the governor should be held to a higher standard and being transparent in this case is the right thing."

"Scott has not made timely payment for the use of the aircraft, nor had he reported the airplane use values, either as an in-kind contribution or a loan," says one of the complaints, filed by Ron Meyer, an election lawyer who's a lobbyist for the Florida Education Association, a teacher union that opposes Scott's re-election.

A second election law complaint claims that each use of the plane was an in-kind contribution in excess of the $3,000 limit, and should have been reported (Meyer said the cost of operating Scott's jet is about $2,000 per hour). The ethics complaint alleges that under state law, the Scott campaign's use of the jet is a gift that must be reported each time, and it has not.

Scott's campaign has said it is complying with the law by periodically reporting expenses for air travel throughout the election cycle. The state Division of Elections has said that all campaign expenses must be reported in the month after they occurred.

Several days after the Times/Herald report on April 5, Scott's campaign listed $5,534 in payments for air travel to the jet's owner, Columbia Collier Management of Naples, whose only officer is Scott's wife, First Lady Ann Scott. Scott's latest campaign report, for April, shows no air travel expenses. The Republican Party of Florida listed payments of $11,323 to the company for travel on its April monthly report.

 

Comments

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ed jenkins

The citizens are thankful for this scott using his own means of transportation rather than taxpayer confiscated funds.

Can't take anymore

Think again, Ed. Scott "confiscated" the money to finance his personal fortune largely thru Medicare fraud that looted the money from taxpayers. The public is denied any information about where, when and with whom he flies this plane because he claims "security" to hide his coming and going.

Hmmmm...

"The public is denied any information about where, when and with whom he flies this plane because he claims "security" to hide his coming and going."

That protection was afforded any Governor even when the state owned planes...

Bill

Just one more flip-flop by the scumbag Scott. This horrible man thinks he is the CEO of a private company and that he is not accountable to the citizens of our great state.

"In his 2010 campaign for governor, Scott disclosed $280,000 in 11 separate payments for travel and accounting to the company listed as the aircraft's owner, then called Columbia Collier Properties, with Ann Scott as its sole official.

Scott's campaign did not explain why he's not reporting similar expenses in this race."

Bill

What security precautions are needed by blacking out arrival and departure details when reporting official schedules after the fact?

"Scott's air travel reflects not only his wealth, but his preference for stealth. Despite his oft-stated support for transparency, Scott keeps his flight itineraries off tracking websites and even blacks out arrival and departure details on official schedules after the fact, citing the need for security."

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