The Honorable Sheriff Morgan: Personification of Hubris
In the face of an active investigation of his misuse and misappropriation of LET funds, Sir David shamelessly boasts about his fleecing the county on Facebook.
This is an attempt to deceive the public into believing that what he did is lawful. However, if it was 100% above board, would the State Attorney be investigating this? The answer is NO. Sources inside the SAO claim that Pam Bondi has put Bill Eddins on notice that she expects him to do his job so that she won't have to intervene. Clearly, there is some indication of concern of a cover-up. The implication here is indicative that Ms. Bondi foresees the gravitas of the issues coming out of this investigation. For example the impeachment or removal of county commissioners as well as ye olde Sheriff.
The members of the BOCC were suppose to govern this fund. The director of Management and Budget Services, Amy Lovoy was not aware of the necessity of the commissioners to monitor the fund. She has reportedly stated that very thing to the State Attorney's office. What that means is that the standard practice-- as long as she has been involved--has been in violation of the statute. County Commissioners were also "unaware" of their duties. According to an opinion from Ms. Bondi's site:
Att'y Gen. Fla. 81-99 (1981) (board of county commissioners vested with exclusive authority to decide appropriation of contraband trust funds to the sheriff's office). See also Op. Att'y Gen. Fla. 78-55 (1978), concluding that it is the duty and responsibility of the governing bodies of the affected counties and municipalities to approve or disapprove the expenditures from, and the appropriation of, funds collected under the contraband forfeiture act.
But folks we are dealing with people who reap huge salaries and haven't read their own job description or the statutes that define how the county is supposed to work. HELLO! The bad thing is that Morgan seems to have played all of them. They look like fools for his crimes and yes, the misappropriation of over $1Million is a crime. Some organizations may even be compelled to return the funds which could throw this entire fiasco into an oblivion of chaos. These agencies, like the Filipino-American Club, has no justification to receive these funds; they have not provided documents to show that the money was appropriated to the specifications of the statute.
Historically, in the state of Florida, any money granted to an agency from special trust funds like this has caveats that be accountability as to how the money was spent. When that is not complied with--even assuming they were funded in good faith with crime/drug prevention in mind--it was required to be repaid. Grants and trust funds with this caveat could be asking charities that got the ill-begotten funds to return it to the county. The Fil-Am Club received operating expenses out of this fund. That is illegal.
The most grotesque thing about this is that Morgan is acting as if he is being altruistic by helping the areas of the communities with these funds. Those of us that see Morgan for what he is, know that it is a way to manipulate people to donate money to his campaign.
Consider this, practically, if he used the money for the proper things to improve the agency, the county would be safer. However, he is selling the county safety in not training or retaining officers that WILL STAY. He is selling safety by taking money that could be used to provide more training for the new officers out there due to the high attrition rate and even better equipment to deal with the kinds of crime emerging. The big thing is Morgan has run off the better officers and the new ones don't stay. That is a problem. That is Morgan's problem. Yet the money he spends is on outward organizations as he puts the onus and responsibility for safety on the public. He is undermining his organization for political gain.
The kind of corruption the media talk about, the kind the Supreme Court was concerned about, involves the putative sale of votes in exchange for campaign contributions--. James L. Buckley