Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.
A sealed document was filed last week in the federal public corruption case against suspended Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox.
Its existence was revealed Monday in a public court docket. Friday’s filing includes an exhibit and a cover letter, the docket shows, though it does not disclose who made the filing.
A change of plea hearing is still set for Tuesday at 10 a.m. before Senior U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle for Maddox and co-defendant Paige Carter-Smith, who has been a political ally and served as his longtime aide.
Late Monday afternoon, U.S. Attorney Lawrence Keefe of the Northern District of Florida announced he would “hold a brief media availability 30 minutes after the conclusion of the plea hearing.”
The availability will be held on the 4th floor of the federal courthouse in downtown Tallahassee.
Also Tuesday, a 1 p.m. status conference is set for a third defendant in the case — local entrepreneur J.T. Burnette — who was indicted in May on federal charges, including fraud and racketeering. That’s also before Hinkle.
Both Maddox and Carter-Smith were indicted in December 2018 as part of an investigation the FBI launched in 2015. The indictments were the first to come out of an investigation into alleged crime and corruption in the capital city.
Maddox was the city’s first directly-elected “leadership” mayor and a former Florida Democratic Party chair.
He was suspended by then-Gov. Rick Scott and has been temporarily replaced by Elaine Bryant as Seat 1 Commissioner.
Carter-Smith most recently had been executive director of Tallahassee’s Downtown Improvement Authority, a position from which she stepped down.
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Wake Up Early?
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican who chairs the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, will take part in a “Women in Small Business Roundtable” discussion with the National Women’s Business Council. The discussion will focus on female entrepreneurship in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). That’s at 9 a.m., University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, University Student Center, 140 Seventh Ave. South, St. Petersburg.
The Early Learning Programs Education Conference will discuss issues involving the voluntary prekindergarten program. That’s at 9:30 a.m., 117 Knott Building, the Capitol.
Suspended Tallahassee City Commissioner Maddox, a onetime chairman of the Florida Democratic Party, will appear before U.S. District Judge Hinkle to change his plea in a 44-count indictment on corruption-related charges. Maddox’s longtime aide, Carter-Smith, who was also indicted, is also expected to change her plea. That’s at 10 a.m., U.S. Courthouse, 111 North Adams St., Tallahassee.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida will hold a press briefing in Miami-Dade County about civil-rights issues facing communities of color. That’s at 11 a.m. Reporters may contact the ACLU of Florida for location information in Miami.
The Social Services Estimating Conference will analyze expenditures in the Medicaid program at 1:30 p.m., 117 Knott Building.
U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz and Space Florida President Frank DiBello will be among the speakers during a Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce event about expanding the aerospace industry in Volusia County. That’s at 3 p.m., Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Jim Henderson Welcome Center, 600 South Clyde Morris Blvd., Daytona Beach.
State Sen. Bobby Powell and state Rep. Al Jacquet, both Democrats, will host a community forum to raise awareness of a new law against texting while driving. That’s at 5:30 p.m., Manifest Church of West Palm Beach (formerly Shiloh Church), 2275 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd., West Palm Beach. RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org.