Rich Glorioso doesn't want Hillsborough Elections employees who have contributed to his opponent working in that office

Share on Nextdoor

Dr. Lennard was unavailable for comment.


A total of 12 employees have given financial contributions to Latimer, who was chosen by the late Phyllis Busansky to serve as her chief of staff after she defeated Buddy Johnson in 2008. After Buskansy's death from a heart attack in 2009, Lennard was named to replace her. He retained Latimer as his chief of staff.


Glorioso also notes that three employees in the office are "openly campaigning for Mr. Latimer," listing Peg Reese, Lyle Roberts and Ella Coffee.


Glorioso's campaign manager, Brock Mikosky, says it's the appearance of impropriety that concerns the GOP candidate. "It's pretty widespread over there," he says.


When contacted, Latimer says he was disappointed to hear about Glorioso's request, saying he's had over 600 people donate to his campaign, and hasn't solicited any of them. "Employees of the office have a constitutional right to do whatever they want in their own free time," which Mikosky says Glorioso agrees with.


And Latimer took a shot at Glorioso, saying "this is someone who thought the lobbying laws were the worst thing that ever passed when he was in the Legislature." However, Glorioso did vote for the ethics bill limiting lobbyists' powers that was sponsored by Brandon Senator Tom Lee in 2005.


As to the charge that there could be a perceived conflict if someone is both on the ballot and counting the votes, Latimer dismissed those concerns. He said that both Pam Iorio and Buddy Johnson ran for re-election while in the office. It took three days for the vote to be certified in Johnson's race against Busansky in '08, Latimer points out. "If there was some opportunity to do something he had three days to do it. But in this day and age with paper trails and audits, we know exactly who got a vote-by-mail ballot and we know who exactly returned a vote-by-mail ballot. This is kind of a far reach."


Voting by absentee ballot has been ongoing. Early voting begins on October 27. Latimer noted that Glorioso has the incorrect date (October 22) listed on his website.


Here's the full text of Glorioso's letter:


October 19, 2012



Dr. Earl Lennard
Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections
601 E. Kennedy Blvd., 16th Floor
Tampa, FL 33602


Dear Dr. Lennard,


The purpose of this letter is to serve as notification of the activities of Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections staff members and to request action on your part to provide a fair and ethical elections process, without perception of impropriety.


During the period of this current election cycle, a number of your employees have made campaign contributions to the campaign of another of your employees, Craig Latimer. Below are the contributions made by employees and their family members to the Latimer campaign:


- Margaret “Peg” Reese - $1,000

- Lyle Roberts - $1,000
Trace Roberts - $200
Cheryl Roberts - $250

- Tim Bobanic - $500
Patricia Bobanic - $200

- Andrew Alexandre - $1,000
Barbara Alexandre - $1,000

- Gary Alexander - $300

- Ella Coffee - $100

- Christina Lanier - $1,000
Bruce Lanier - $1,000


Dr. Lennard, it has also come to my attention that a number of employees have been openly campaigning for Mr. Latimer. These employees are Peg Reese, Lyle Roberts and Ella Coffee.


It is my contention that it would be impossible for the employees, including those contributing and openly campaigning, to carry out their duties without the appearance of impropriety, given their open support of Mr. Latimer. It is because of these activities that I request that you remove these employees from the Robert L. Gilder Elections Service Center on Falkenburg Road immediately and until the election is certified. I also ask that you ensure that none of the above mentioned employees have any contact with ballots, including Vote By Mail or Early Vote, that include the race for Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections. Additionally, I ask that their access to election data be suspended for the same time period.


Given the time-sensitive nature of this request, I look forward to your prompt response. I hope that you will be able to take action to protect the integrity of the voting process.



Sincerely,


Rep. Rich Glorioso
Candidate
Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections

  • Rich Glorioso

Plant City State Representative Rich Glorioso is running for Supervisor of Elections in Hillsborough County next month against Democrat Craig Latimer, who currently works as chief of staff to the current SOE head, Dr. Earl Lennard.

A number of staff members in that office have given financial support to Latimer, and Glorioso doesn't like that one bit.

So on Friday he submitted a letter to Lennard listing those employees and requesting that they be removed from the elections office on Falkenberg Road until after the election.

"It is my contention that it would be impossible for the employees, including those contributing and openly campaigning, to carry out their duties without the appearance of impropriety, given their open support of Mr. Latimer," Glorioso writes. "It is because of these activities that I request that you remove these employees from the Robert L. Gilder Elections Service Center on Falkenburg Road immediately and until the election is certified."

Glorioso also is requesting that the employees he specifically mentions be banned from having any contact with ballots that include the race for Supervisor of Elections. "Additionally, I ask that their access to election data be suspended for the same time period," he writes.

Scroll to read more News Feature articles

Newsletters

Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.