On August 17, Commissioner Valentino’s issued this response to the State Attorney’s reports on the Sunshine Law and public records investigations – read.
Gene has chosen to emphasize certain words:
BASELESS ALLEGATION —
FALSE. The State Attorney said his review determined that no Sunshine violation was committed. In the report, asst. State Attorney Greg Marcille wrote that “there is insufficient evidence to establish that any violation occurred”—-which is far from calling it baseless complaint.
Marcille ends his report with “While our review has determined that there was not a Sunshine Law violation, we are concerned about the appearance of impropriety that the meeting between Gene Valentino and Sam Hall raises. All members of commissions and boards that are subject to the Sunshine should be acutely aware of the public perception of their actions.”
Sam Hall was man enough and honest enough to say that he should have realized how the public would perceive the meeting and won’t do it again.
Valentino ignores the State Attorney’s message entirely and rewrites it to suit his agenda.
Valentino also says – “I produced every record that was requested and did so in a timely manner.”
“There is factually NO EVIDENCE and factually NO TRUTH that I withheld any public record.”
—FALSE The State Attorney’s office actually found during its investigation more emails that Valentino failed to release.
The SAO press release says: “This review has determined that sufficient facts exist to believe that Commissioner Valentino did fail to timely or completely respond to a public record request…”
Can’t get any clearer than that.
If it’s Valentino position that he plans to fight the SAO in court, then we could have a very interesting court date on August 27. I look forward to the evidence that Bill Eddins presents in court.
BTW The letterhead that Valentino used still has Mike Whitehead as a commissioner.