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CRESPOGRAM REPORT

APRIL 1, 2014

IT’S YOUR PROBLEM
YOU DEAL WITH IT

Last November I filed an ethics complaint against Joe “Let’em Go” Centorino, the Executive Director of the Miami-Dade County Commission on Ethics and Public Trust, for Abuse of Power and Misuse of Public Funds.  The basis for my complaint was that last October, he had assigned an Ethics Commission investigator to conduct what I believe became an embarrassingly superficial investigation of an allegation made by a candidate for Mayor of Hialeah that the current Mayor and members of the City Commission had engaged in a violation of the Sunshine Law by holding a private meeting prior to the scheduled meeting where the Commission reviewed the annual budget.


Centorino, in a response to an email by fellow blogger Elaine De Valle of Political Cortadito, about his investigation into this Sunshine Law issue had admitted that, “We do not have jurisdiction to enforce the Sunshine Law.”


That, and other issues surrounding the way that the Ethics Commission had handled my Sunshine Law complaint against 3 of the Ethics Commissioners in the Carollo case, prompted me to file a complaint.


Within 48 hours of filing, Michael Murawski, the Commission’s “Advocate” wrote me asking me to withdraw it and file it with some other agency.  I refused, and he and the Commission at their december meeting, determined that they did not want to deal with the complaint and sent it to the Miami-Dade County Office of the Inspector General.


After reviewing the case, the Inspector General returned the complaint to the Ethics Commission with the letter below.


Read the letter closely and you will see that the reasoning behind the Inspector General’s refusal to get involved is that ONLY the Ethics Commission is empowered to handle an ethics complaint.


Do you think that the members of the Ethics Commission were clueless to that salient piece of information when the attempted to shirk their legal responsibility by sending my complaint to the IG?


Now that it’s back in their hands it will be very interesting to see how the Ethics Commission decides to handle this case, because at its core, this is a personnel matter that deals with how their employee ordered an investigation into a case involving a law that the Ethics Commission “does not have jurisdiction to enforce.”

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