Underhill gets another extension in ethics case

Escambia County Commissioner Doug Underhill has gotten another extension for his administrative hearing on the State Commission on Ethics’ probable cause finding against him. The hearing has been moved to 8:30 a.m. on May 9 and May 10. Judge Chisenhall signed the order yesterday.

The Attorney General’s Advocate for the Florida Commission on Ethics, Elizabeth Miller, had objected to the motion to continue, arguing that Underhill’s attorneys didn’t request any depositions until March 9 – less than two weeks before the hearing. Underhill had failed to provide copies of all proposed exhibits and was ordered by the judge on Feb. 10 to provide them on or before March 15. The commissioner alleged County Attorney Alison Rogers had the records, but Underhill didn’t notify Rogers that a proposed subpoena would be served on her to produce the documents until March 2.

Miller wrote in her objection, “Based on his actions in this case, Respondent’s (Underhill) intent is to drag the case out as long as possible.”

Despite his public statements that he looked forward to his day in court, Underhill appears to be trying to run out the clock and avoid any final judgment before his term ends.

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2 thoughts on “Underhill gets another extension in ethics case

  1. Doug is nothing if not predictable. Nobody who really knows his medicine man house of cards is surprised by this. It’s all he has got.

    It’s actually a good thing that the DOAH judge is bending over backwards so that zero arguments can be made that he didn’t get a fair hearing. The judge in Jacqueline Rogers’s political, harassing land use suits on the Sector Plan opt outs did the same thing as Jacqueline unnecessarily dragged the proceedings out acting as the client with a fool for a lawyer. After affording her every deference, the court slammed down on her nonsense in the final order and made clear exactly what she had been up to.

    Moreover, here are the two key rules of thumb when it comes to Doug Underhill:

    (1) he will always keep talking; and
    (2) he can always get worse.

    Time is therefore not on his side. Even if he manages to stall this out as his best defense on removal from office, he can–and should, if he is found guilty– still have his lifetime (and lifetime of spouse after him) retirement benefits taken away.

    You know, the ones that he got crammed down his throat by the state of Florida.

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