Rick Scott names lawyers to Florida Elections Commission - Florida Politics

Rick Scott names lawyers to Florida Elections Commission

Gov. Rick Scott appointed two Tallahassee attorneys to the Florida Elections Commission, his office announced Friday night.

Coincidentally, both specialize in representing automotive dealers.

Martin Hayes, 62, is a partner at the Akerman firm. Hayes fills a vacant seat and is appointed for a term beginning Aug. 24 and ending Dec. 31, 2020.

Hayes

Hayes, a litigator, mainly works with motor vehicle dealerships “in all aspects of the motor vehicle dealer-manufacturer relationship,” according to his firm bio.

He “represents auto dealers in litigation, mediations, and informal settlement conferences on issues as diverse as acquiring additional dealerships, warranty audit issues, facility upgrades, terminations, and buy-sell turndowns.”

Hayes received his undergraduate and law degrees from Florida State University. He was nominated by Senate Democratic Leader Oscar Braynon II of Miami Gardens.

Jason Allen, 39, is a partner at Bass Sox Mercer, which “represents automobile, truck and motorcycle dealers in complex commerical transactions,” its website says.

Allen

Allen got his undergraduate degree from Florida State, where he was a member of the golf team, and his law degree from Mercer University School of Law, his bio says.

He served as a staff attorney for then-House Speaker Marco Rubio, now the state’s Republican U.S. senator, and later as a clerk for state Supreme Court Justice Ricky Polston.

Allen succeeds Commissioner Sean Hall and is appointed for a term beginning Aug. 24 and ending Dec. 31, 2020. He was nominated by House Speaker Richard Corcoran, a Land O’ Lakes Republican.

The appointments are subject to state Senate confirmation.

Jim Rosica covers state government from Tallahassee for Florida Politics. He previously was the Tampa Tribune’s statehouse reporter. Before that, he covered three legislative sessions in Florida for The Associated Press. Jim graduated from law school in 2009 after spending nearly a decade covering courts for the Tallahassee Democrat, including reporting on the 2000 presidential recount. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

2 Comments

  1. It would really be useful if the appointing authority (here, the Governor) were required to file with the Secretary of State a “Notice of Intent to Appoint”, naming the individual and giving the reasons why. This would be required to be done, say, three weeks in advance.

    That way, the public — even the lobbyists, if you’ll pardon the expression — would at least have the opportunity to speak their minds. The way things are now, the appointing authority usually gets informal input from the politically-connected, does some negotiating (with whomsoever needs to be negotiated with) and then springs the appointment on the rest of us.

    This proposal, if enacted, would make for a little more Government in the Sunshine.

  2. NOTICE OF INTENT TO APPOINT.

    The Governor gets to make these appointments by surprise. Usually, doing so is an unremarkable event. However, some appointments have a major impact and “surprise” is not a good idea.

    So, there should be a “Notice of Intent” requirement, whereby the Governor (or any appointing authority) is required to file — as a matter of public record — a notice that he/she/it intends to appoint or nominate so-and-so to such-and-such a position (above a certain pay grade).

    This will allow the public an opportunity to inform itself (if it chooses to do so) and to give its own feedback in its own way.

    In other words, more “Government in the Sunshine”.

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