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Gillum Settles Ethics Complaints

April 24th, 2019 by Mike Vasilinda

Former Democratic Gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum has settled with the state Ethics Commission. He faced five counts of accepting gifts, but he will agree to just one count of taking a free boat ride in New York City and pay a five thousand dollar fine.

The Former Tallahassee Mayor and Gubernatorial nominee was upbeat when he arrived for the hearing telling reporters “I believe that if this is a process that will be determined on fact, I feel very, very confident we will prevail on this.”

The hearing was delayed at least three times as settlement talks took place. Two and a half hours later it was over.

Elizabeth Miller of the Florida Commission on Ethics announced “The parties have entered into an amicable settle agreement.”

Gillum had already taken responsibility publicly for accepting a free boat ride in New York Harbor. 

Afterwards Gillum told reporters the Ethics Commission approached him to discuss a settlement. 

“When you learn more information, you have to step up and you take responsibility for what it is you come to know. This happening in the context of a statewide election didn’t make it any easier.”

Attorney Barry Richard says Gillum agreed to pay a five thousand dollar fine for accepting the boat ride.

“You know,” says Richard, “It’s not clear, but this is kind of a technicality, but to Mayor Gillum didn’t make any difference. He said I shouldn’t have done it.”

Many here in the Capitol believe Gillum would be Governor today but for all of the allegations.

During the campaign for Governor, Gillum was hammered in one TV spot after another. We asked advisor Kevin Cate ”Did this cost him the Governor’s race?”

His response: “What today was about was complete vindication from what the Mayor had said all along, which is he never knowingly did anything to violate any ethics laws.”

The agreement is subject to approval from the Full Ethics Commission.

The Full Ethics Commission will take up the settlement in its June Seventh meeting. History suggest it will be accepted.

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