Recent Broward Law Blog Features

Friday, March 27, 2009

AG Fighting Cyber Crime Fast and Loose With Public Funds

Beth Reinhard, great reporter for the Herald, opines today about the potential rivals in the next governor's race, Attorney General Bill McCollum and Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, feuding over the no-bid contract for his cybercrime campaign.
Wait, did we not just elect Charley Crist? And why don't the people we elect have their seats warm before we are talking about them running for something else? Anyway, all I am blogging about today is how power and influence greases the wheel and that is not the way it should be. In a sense, this is the point Howard Finkelstein was making in the last piece about the Chief's wife getting a better deal than others similarly situated.
So Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum wants to fight cyber crime. Good for him. I see his ads all over TV. So do you I am sure. But now I find out his noble public purpose is a vehicle to line green the pockets of a chief campain aide. What a bunch of crap that is. Seems that he has been doling out dollars to a consultant to run the ads using the 'no-bid' you be my good buddy system. Gracious, me. In our society? Shocking!

McCollum has already dropped about $1.4 million in state funds on public service ads about on-line predators, and he asked for Sink's ''continued support.'' She said she backs the message, not the method.

''I was disappointed to learn that you intend to continue your no-bid contract to Chris Mottola Consulting, instead of going through a competitive bidding process,'' Sink wrote in response. ``Also it is important to note that these funds are public funds -- they belong to Florida's taxpayers.''

Sink asked for more documentation on the contract but her office has said she can't stop payment if McCollum complies with state law. He called her actions ''hypocritical'' and accused her of standing in the way of public safety.

''This essential program's only purpose is to protect Florida's children,'' McCollum wrote back. ``CyberSafety is not a political issue -- our children's safety hangs in the balance.''
Bah Humbug. So much for nobility.

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