With less than seven weeks left in the hotly contested Florida gubernatorial campaign between Ron DeSantis and Andrew Gillum, campaign records show that a company tied to Leon County School Superintendent Rocky Hanna and registered in Las Vegas, Nevada, donated $50,000 to the Forward Florida PAC which was supporting Gillum.
Records show that two $25,000 donations were made by HAH I and HAH III on September 24th, 2018. The two LLC’s were listed as real estate development companies.
TR has determined that the donations were made to the PAC at a fundraiser held at the home of Sean Pittman.
This is the same PAC that has faced criticism from the likes of John Morgan for not spending donor money during the 2018 gubernatorial election.
TR has recently written about Pittman’s relationship with the Leon County School Board. Also, there have been reports documenting monthly payments to Sean Pittman owned companies in 2018 & 2019 from the Forward Florida PAC.
TR first determined the connection between Rocky Hanna and the companies – with the nondescript names of HAH, HAH I, HAH II, and HAH III – after a review of corporate documents revealed that the companies are controlled, at least in part, by Hanna’s brother, Darrell Hanna.
A further connection was discovered after reviewing Rocky Hanna’s financial disclosure Form 6 on file with the Florida Commission on Ethics. The documents show that Rocky Hanna has a financial interest in the companies registered in Las Vegas.
Rocky Hanna listed “HAH Investments” on his 2019 form as a financial asset with a value of $210,000 in 2018. Hanna also listed 2018 income of $167,000 from “HAH I,II, III, LLC”.
The address of the companies on the Form 6 – 4730 South Fort Apache Road Suite 300, Las Vegas, Nevada – is the same address attached to the two $25,000 donations to Forward Florida.
It appears the companies are registered in Las Vegas due to the business benefits allowed by Nevada law. These benefits include strong privacy protection for owners, who can remain anonymous, no taxes on corporate shares or profits, and no formal information-sharing agreement with the IRS.
TR is still researching the web of company connections related to these LLC’s, however the business activities appear to take place near Atlanta, where Superintendent Hanna’s brother resides.
The donations to Gillum’s PAC raises several questions still being researched by TR, which include the following:
Who is behind the corporate donation to Gillum’s PAC? Is it Superintendent Hanna or his brother?
Second, what prompted the donation? Seldom do you see local elected officials tied to such large donations.
And finally, have these companies or related companies made other donations to candidates in the Tallahassee area?