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Coronavirus in Florida

Mark Foley political committee pitches in $40,000 to help with coronavirus relief

Those disbursements were included in a new FEC filing.

Former U.S. Rep. Mark Foley has tapped into an old but still-running campaign account, forwarding $40,000 toward relief efforts related to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Those disbursements were included in a new filing with the Federal Election Commission (FEC). The filing was spotted by Dave Levinthal, an editor-at-large for The Center for Public Integrity.

The money comes from “Friends of Mark Foley for Congress,” a political committee associated with Foley’s former time in the U.S. House. Foley was forced to resign in 2006 after sending sexually-suggestive messages to high-school-aged boys in the congressional page program.

According to the recently-filed FEC report, Foley’s committee gave four separate $10,000 donations to groups in the Palm Beach County area. Foley previously represented the region during his time in Congress.

The four groups receiving those donations from Foley’s committee are the Boys and Girls Club of Palm Beach County, Habitat For Humanity, Place of Hope and the United Way of Palm Beach County.

Each of those donations was labeled either “corona relief” or “Corona Virus Emergency Fund.”

Some of those organizations, such as Place of Hope, have courted donations to help stay afloat amid the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. The organization cares for hundreds of foster kids and young mothers.

Others, such as the United Way of Palm Beach County, have sought to organize fundraising efforts to help members of the community. The donations from Foley’s committee will likely help with those respective efforts.

As of Thursday evening, Palm Beach County ranked third in terms of confirmed coronavirus cases among the state’s 67 counties. The region has nearly 1,300 confirmed cases out of nearly 17,000 throughout the state.

Palm Beach County continues to have one of the highest death rates among areas with relatively large outbreaks. According to data compiled by Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics, the death rate inside Palm Beach County is 5.63%.

That’s well over double the state’s death rate of 2.36%. It’s also the highest death rate of any county with at least 200 confirmed cases.

Written By

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to ryan.t.nicol@gmail.com.

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