By Matthew Decker
The Florida Commission on Ethics found no probable cause to believe Commissioner Ross abused his Commissioner seat.
On July 22nd, the Florida Commission on Ethics reviewed a complaint filed against Commissioner Ross by Nassau Terminals LLC. According to Commissioner Ross, the then-President of Nassau Terminals, Christopher Ragucci, alleged that he harassed OHPA and Nassau Terminals. His supposed motivation for harassing conduct was that he would benefit from the closing of the Port of Fernandina, as his residence is two and a half blocks away and would increase in value if the Port was not in operation. In the July 26th Special Meeting of the Fernandina Beach City Commission, Commissioner Ross claimed an example of this harassing conduct was that he had filed four Public Records requests against Nassau Terminals.
The Florida State Ethics Commission conducted a ten-month investigation and found “No probable cause…to believe he misused his position when the City reviewed a grant application that would affect a port in the vicinity of Mr. Ross’ residence.” Commissioner Ross, stated, “Many of the statements Mr. Ragucci made under oath were not true. I can only speculate as to what motivated Mr. Ragucci to file the complaint. Mr Ragucci recently sold his interest in the Port, and I wish him well in his endeavors.”
Sources: http://www.ethics.state.fl.us/Documents/Ethics/PressReleases/Jul22pres.pdf?cp=2022731 and last City Commission meeting aftersession.
Matthew Decker is a Co-Founder of Citizens Journal Florida, having set up some of the technical and social media infrastructure. He also developed sourcing for some of its municipal government and business content. He is an Aerospace Engineer by trade. He has worked in NGO’s performing civic activities. He originally hails from Ventura, CA