According to ethics commission lawyer Steven Zuilkowski, Glen Gilzean, administrator of Governor Ron DeSantis’ Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, cannot continue to serve as the state’s ethics commission chairman in addition to being a board member of the district, according to a legal opinion released Thursday.
According to an analysis written by Zuilkowski, Florida state law does not allow public employees to serve on a government watchdog panel.
Gilzean, chairman of the ethics commission, was hired in May 2023 to lead the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District with an annual salary of $400,000 as the district’s administrator.
“[I]t appears that your position as district administrator for the district is public employment,” Zuilkowski concluded.
DeSantis initially appointed Gilzean to the ethics commission back in August 2019, and that term expires in June 2024. According to an article in the Orlando Sentinel, “the nine members of the ethics panel, who do not draw a salary, are appointed by the governor and leaders of the Florida Senate and House.”
DeSantis supporter Gilzean took his seat with the tourism district in the administrator post on May 10, 2023. The district’s five board members, who approved the hiring, were also appointed by the governor.
As this is a developing story, any updates will appear at the top of this original post.
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