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Interim leader remains at OFR helm

Florida appears likely to end the year with an interim commissioner at the Office of Financial Regulation, leaving the future leadership of the agency to the next governor and state Cabinet. Gov. Rick Scott and the Cabinet in June appointed Deputy Commissioner Pam Epting to serve as interim commissioner.

That move came after former Commissioner Drew Breakspear resigned under pressure from state Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis. The Cabinet drew 58 applications for the commissioner’s job, and interviews were conducted with five applicants.

But Scott and the Cabinet have not named a commissioner.

Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam will leave office in January, with Patronis the only Cabinet member who could remain if he wins in the November election.

A web page advertising the commissioner position indicates the search is over.

“Sorry, this position has been filled,” the site says.

Scott and the Cabinet have only one scheduled meeting the rest of the year, with it slated to occur Dec. 4.

When asked about filling the position, Scott spokeswoman Ashley Cook on Friday replied with an email that said, “Pam Epting is still the interim commissioner. As you know, the Cabinet must vote to appoint a commissioner of OFR.”

The News Service of Florida provides journalists, lobbyists, government officials and other civic leaders with comprehensive, objective information about the activities of state government year-round.

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