Frank Artiles gets first lobbying client

artiles ap photo
Artiles is representing Rogar Management & Consulting of Florida in the Legislature.

Former Sen. Frank Artiles picked up his first lobbying client Tuesday.

According to registration disclosures, the Miami Republican is representing Rogar Management & Consulting of Florida in the Legislature. Rogar is a Miami-based contracting company and member of the Florida Transportation Builders Association (FTBA).

Artiles, a contractor by trade, is lobbying under his longtime firm Atlas Consultants. Artiles is known to be close with House Speaker Jose Oliva, also a Miami Republican.

Artiles served in the House from 2010 through 2016, when he was elected to the Senate District 40. He only held the seat for about six months before he resigned after making a string of racially charged comments.

Artiles accosted Sen. Perry Thurston, a Fort Lauderdale Democrat, and Sen. Audrey Gibson, a Jacksonville Democrat, calling her a “b****h” and a “girl” in a dispute over legislation at a private club in Tallahassee Monday night.

Artiles also used a slang variation of the ‘N-word,’ referring to white Republicans who supported Joe Negron as Senate President. Thurston and Gibson are black.

When the comments made national news, politicians and advocacy groups on both sides of the aisle called for his resignation. Rather than face possible expulsion, he resigned.

The comments weren’t the only controversy during Artiles’ time in the Legislature. At the start of the 2015 Legislative Session, the former Marine Corps sergeant was having pre-session drinks at Clydes & Costello’s, a popular Tallahassee bar. About 1:30 a.m. he reportedly punched a 21-year-old college student.

Artiles denied the incident happened, telling reporters that if he hit anyone they would “be in the hospital.”

Florida law bans former lawmakers and statewide elected officials from becoming lobbyists until they’ve been out of office for two years.

This week marked two years since his resignation.

Drew Wilson

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.



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