Happy Halloween, scariest TRUE story about LowT Gimenez

Miami Herald:

County declines lawmaker’s request for ethics review on steel deal with mayor’s son

  • LowT denies an ethics review request on himself and his son's deal... 
  • This alone should be pulling up some red flags...
  • LowT Gimenez ("recused" himself in 2017) and now REMOVED HIS RECUSAL on other things his son works on, recommends his son's $5 MILLION subsidy...
  • The incentive package is the largest of its kind in 14 years and awarded under Gimenez, who took office in 2011...
  • So the largest and most of it's kind and for his son...     $_$

Miami-Dade won’t be reviewing the ethics of a nearly $5 million county subsidy for a steel mill proposed by the mayor’s son, denying an inquiry request from one of the mayor’s top foes in Tallahassee.

Rep. Bryan Avila, R-Miami Springs, earlier this month asked the county to review the ethical rules governing the County Commission’s Oct. 3 approval of one of the largest business subsidies of its kind to a proposed steel mill partially owned by Julio Gimenez. Recently, both the commission chairwoman and the director of the county’s ethics board said Avila’s request wouldn’t be granted.

Audrey Edmonson, the commission’s chairwoman, wrote to Avila, saying the county code doesn’t allow the board to request an opinion from the ethics board on “past conduct” from someone.

“Having said that, I assure that the County Commission considers compliance with the Code of Ethics to be of the utmost importance,” Edmonson wrote Avila on Oct. 16, a day the commission had earlier proclaimed “Ethical Governance Day 2019” in a resolution passed unanimously the same day as the steel mill award.

State rep @BryanAvilaFL demands Miami-Dade review $4.9M subsidy award to steel-mill venture that has a son of @MayorGimenez as a partner. Avila and Gimenez are top foes in @MDXway battle. Commission approved award, largest in 14 years, without asking any questions.
Mayor Carlos Gimenez issued a recusal memo on his son’s project in 2017, and staff of the county’s Ethics Commission said the mayor’s son was free to pursue county business as long as the mayor followed the appropriate rules and did not influence the county’s decision.

Miami-Dade commissioners approved the $4.9 million maximum future payout for Gimenez and partners’ Esteel electric steel mill and commercial complex, a planned $224 million for-profit project that pledged to create at least 180 jobs outside the Homestead air base. The 123-acre site is owned by Miami-Dade, and commissioners in May approved allowing the Esteel partners to purchase it for an appraised value of $16.8 million.

The $4.9 million for Esteel would come from property taxes under the county program called the Targeted Jobs Incentive Fund, which grants awards approved by the commission based on a project’s investment and new-job total. Esteel, like other recipients, only gets the money if the facility gets built and the people hired. The money is designed to refund a portion of the property taxes paid by new businesses allowed to enter the program by Miami-Dade.

Commissioners approved the award in an 11-2 vote without asking any questions. Two of the commissioners running to succeed a term-limited Gimenez in 2020, Esteban “Steve” Bovo and Daniella Levine Cava, voted No.

#LowTGimenez recommends his own son's #$5MILLION subsidy... #Miami #Taxpayers #RICO miamisecretpapers.org/2019/09/lowtgi…
Gimenez deputy mayor Jack Osterholt recommended the proposal in an Oct. 3 memo to the commission. It was the largest award from the fund since a previous commission approved a $5.3 million award for Burger King to remain in the Miami area in 2005. (It would be worth about $7 million in 2019 dollars.)

Jose Arrojo, the director of Miami-Dade’s Ethics Commission, said a county lawyer contacted him about Edmonson’s Oct. 16 letter before it was sent to Avila. He called the letter “right on point” and said the Ethics staff could not issue a finding for Avila on Esteel because “he’s not a covered party.”

On Thursday, Avila questioned the need for a county Ethics arm if it wouldn’t conduct the requested review.

“If that is their reasoning,” Avila said of Arrojo’s position,”then they certainly do not serve the residents of Miami-Dade County. They serve County Hall.”

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