Many of the Citizens have waited for a long time to finally have the corruption in the Town of White Springs ended; whereas others have blamed Joe Griffin for nineteen years for fighting corruption they did not believe existed. Rather they blamed Griffin for all of their problems while White Springs lied and informed others what a “bad man” he is.
Although the Commission on Ethics has not completed their investigation nor have they called a hearing on the various ethics violations Joe and I have sent to them, it may now be moot. I say this because Joe Griffin was contacted by Howard Greenfield cfe, cpm, cigi, cig Director of Investigations Office of Inspector General Florida Department of Transportation with respect to the Local Fuel Tax Option Letter of inquiry I originally sent.
As you will recall Ken Daniels, the Town’s CPA in his instructions to Pam Tomlinson included past and present percentages of the Local Option Fuel Tax to go to Administrative, General Fund and certain salaries. As such, the money paid for an employee who was paid even though he was unable to perform his duties for two years or more, may also fall in the hands of the Attorney General; as well as the favoritism of Andrew Greene and the fire vehicle, etc. The Attorney General works with all manners of Fraud, Waste and Abuse for which White Springs is at the Top of the list.
A case number has been established and Mr. Greenfield will have the information sent to the Florida Department of Transportation Management as well as the Office of the Attorney General for review and action deemed appropriate. Mr. Daniel’s correspondence with Tomlinson and Joe Griffin, in the form of e-mails, has also been included within the evidence provided..
I know not only Rhett Bullard stated I was wrong but so did Dennis Price. What was amazing is the fact that when I inquired of our Town Attorney Karen Hatton, who is paid to research specific items which are discussed, she did not do so but rather told me to “Listen to our Auditor”. So what we have are two attorneys, Bullard and Hatton, who do not appear to read contracts or statutes but will give erroneous advice. I cannot understand how the Town has never understood that if it is regarding the Law, both Joe and I research everything before making statements or complaints.
Ken Daniels also wrote an arrogant e-mail to Joe stating that of course salaries are included
Initially the Commission on ethics received the complaint which was sent in by us but one of their attorneys decided to return it intact, stating that although it did not fall within the commission’s jurisdiction, statutory laws may have been broken.
Stacy Tebo yesterday stated to Joe that he should not bother the State’s Attorney’s office. Ffrankly I do not know why she would be concerned because both Siegmeister and Brady- Giddons were at the court protecting her at her injunction against Joe Griffin. As I stated in my letter,a copy of which was sent to State’s Attorney Jeff Siegmeister, the Third Judicial Circuit is like a “good ole boy I’ll scratch your back if you will scratch mine” facility.
Even though there were various facets of the law being broken in White Springs, the State’s Attorney’s will do nothing to assist an average citizen. So as a result I had no other choice than to provide the information to various offices, which were not the appropriate agencies and departments to handle the matter, but Joe, as the great investigator he is, found the right sources yesterday and by today, an investigation has begun.
In the last six years of Rhett‘s tenure as Mayor of White Springs, there have been one violation after another at the citizen’s detriment and we can thank Tonja Brown and Willie Jefferson for their part in making certain that they could bend the law in their or their friends and families’ favor.
The only councilor who has been fighting for justice is Dr. Helen Miller and if this is as serious as I believe it to be, she may be the “only man standing” while the balance of the council may be removed by the Governor. As a result, we have notified her today of what is transpiring.
Although the violations below have been sent to the commission, we will see what will transpire with the Attorney General’s office.
Public money given to Town Manager Stacy Tebo to employ an attorney friend to prosecute her allegations against Councilor Dr. Helen B. Miller, in order to remove Miller from office.
$25,900 spent on Whistleblower Plaintiff Anita Rivers to clear Town Manager, Stacy Tebo’s name relative to discrimination but for which none of the councilors were advised in a regular meeting. In other words, the investigation was conducted/paid for without council approval or knowledge; Yet Attorney Larkin and our Town Attorney Koberlein were told and believed the investigation had council approval. Former Mayor Rhett Bullard, when questioned, advised it was Town Attorney Koberlein’s fault and soon thereafter our Town Attorney Koberlein terminated his contract with the Town of White Springs because of all the lies and corruption..
Allowance of Employee Andrew Greene to utilize the Fire Emergency SUV for his personal use (without decals) to go to and from work each day; to visit his wife’s relatives in Tampa etc. Greene he has never been involved in a fire fighting situation and per the prior firefighters “letter of no confidence” involving Greene, he would be in danger since he has blackouts and is known to miss work because of these blackouts. He is the sewer and water facilities operator for the Town. It is believed that he received this vehicle as thanks by Rhett Bullard for getting rid of the evidence on former Town Manager Townsend so Robert Townsend could not be charged for raping inmates – which may be the problem today since HCI Inmates do not want to work in a town which made them look like liars.
Since Attorney Elkind was hired by Town Manager Stacy Tebo at $250 an hour to protect her allegations against Hellen B. Miller, a councilor who was charged with Malfeasance for simply asking staff for assistance, Darren Elkind does not have a contract to defend the Town, only staff; we provided the commission with evidence. Instead of providing the Town or getting permission from the council for Darrin Elkind to represent the Town in lieu of our Town Attorney Karen Hatton, Elkind continues to represent the Town (not Staff) without a contract, and is continuing to do so since Helen Miller brought forth a Writ of Certiorai against the Town of White Springs (Not Stacy Tebo). It further is not the position of Stacy Tebo to hire Attorneys but the Council’s. Then Town Attorney Koberlein cautioned the Town Council against Tebo being paid to essentially sue an elected council member Helen Miller, saying it had no precedent.
Even getting Rid of Helen Miller by forfeiting her seat in Kangaroo Court was a benefit to Tebo and three of the five councilors, so they could run the town without objection or discussion in the manner in which they wished. Miller’s seat was forfeited in a quasi judicial hearing where three against one councilor declared such forfeiture. On appeal, Judge Andrew Decker III of the Third Circuit ruled for the town and said it was a legislative hearing rather than a quasi judicial hearing to protect the town. Miller’s Writ of Certiorari is now with the First District Court of Appeal.
We are a drug free workplace yet in the Rivers Deposition Stacy Tebo admitted to taking Percocet at work on a regular basis; something she did not admit to in the DeBary depositions. Two councilors tried to have a workshop to discuss this matter since Tebo’s contract had not been renewed. Instead of retaining Tebo as an “At Will” employee so she could not collect 13 weeks of severance, the workshop was cancelled by three councilors of five and a new contract issued. The Then Town Attorney Koberlein, at the time, sad he would not extend the contract and Mayor Rhett Bullard kept telling everyone in 2018 that it had been extended by Koberlein from September 2017. I had the newspaper article included to verify everything I said plus depositions.
I have not received verification as of yet, but a complaint was made stating Councilor Tonja Brown and Manager Stacy Tebo interfered with the law and the code enforcement officer’s position, for their own gain As a result we have John Davis’s whistle blower letter of termination of the code enforcement position which we submitted along with a statement that he had been fired for no reason from his White Springs Police Officer position and has a case for retaliation against the town which he would surely win because the courts have not found a way to fight retaliation.
Last but not least Rhett Bullard, former mayor and councilor, when purchasing a home for the first time did not pay the $300 deposit required of new owners due to his position.
Each of the aforementioned complaints were sent by Joe Griffin or myself separately to the Ethics Commission, but each time a new complaint was sent in, it was included under the original complaint number assigned to each alleged violator EXCEPT FOR THE NEW COMPLAINT WHICH INCLUDED NEW NUMBERS FOR EACH OF THE ALLEGED VIOLATORS.
We have received notification today. July 16, 2018, that Joe Griffin’s complaints against Vice Mayor Tonja Brown (#18-098), Town Manager Stacy Tebo (#18-099), Councilman and former Mayor Rhett Bullard (#18-100) Finance Director and Town Clerk Pam Tomlinson (#18-101) and former Councilor Willie Jefferson (#18-102) each have separate numbers because of the seriousness of these complaints.
The Complaints involve providing a benefit to Public Works Director Kenny Hutcherson for two years at least while he was ill and unable to perform his duties or work for the Town. Even when we asked for the employee’s assistance with a backhoe in 2016 the Town made excuses for Mr. Hutcherson and gave us back our money. The Town of White Springs has been paying Mr. Hutcherson without reporting to work or signing time sheets, regular compensation, including leave and health benefits until just recently when he retired. This means these benefits were paid for over Two years to Mr. Hutcherson who is former Councilor Willie Jefferson’s brother-in-law with only three councilors’ knowledge and two staff. In other words, permission was never granted in an open meeting and it never would have been granted for such a long period of time. Our personnel policy allows for only 240 hours, while thousands of dollars has been paid over a two-year period. Many laws have been broken as well as a fiduciary trust and because his pay checks were direct deposited in his bank, there may be Federal Wire Fraud Charges.
I’m sure the Commission will probably handle some of the complaints, but since the CPA provided instructions to include salaries, both Andrew Greene’s benefits and Kenny Hutcherson’s, will come into the Attorney General’s purview. We will see.
I just wished for you to know that we both Karin and Joe Griffin and Dr. Helen Miller are working to make White Springs a better place for all of its citizens and finally, there is proof of violations and we now have the correct State Offices working for us to remedy a long standing wrong.
Also, we do not know who the person is that writes the Rhatt Pack Watch but this is my thanks to him or her for their investigative work on the funds White Springs may have received (the Rhatt Pack Watch is coming in the near future) because, I was able to provide that information to the FLDOT. As it happened I received the information yesterday so it was great timing. So thank you “Watch” for your contributions
Karin for the blog