LCS Board Member Will Not Vote on Construction Related Issues

LCS Board Member Will Not Vote on Construction Related Issues

Current Leon County School Board member and Board Chair Dee Dee Rasmussen has recently accepted a job with the Associated Building Contractors of North Florida and has announced she will no longer vote on construction related issues that come before the Board.

Her decision to abstain from votes is based on an opinion from the Florida Commission on Ethics that she requested in November of last year.

In a statement provided to Tallahassee Reports, Rasmussen noted that her elected position is a part-time job and that before accepting the position “I reviewed any and all legal and ethical issues related to such an opportunity by consulting with multiple attorneys. I also obtained a written opinion from the Florida Commission on Ethics.  I will continue to serve with honesty, dedication, and integrity, just as I always have, in my School Board position.”

At the January 14th LCS Board meeting Rasmussen stated that “I am going to abstain from this and all future construction related items I will explain due to my appointment and the possibility of any perceived conflict of interest.”

Ms. Rasmussen abstained from seven votes on construction related issues at the January 14th meeting.

Ms. Rasmussen’s new employer is a nonprofit trade association with membership comprised of over two hundred regional contractors and companies involved in the commercial construction industry.

The employer does not conduct business or have a vending relationship with LCS. However, members of the association provide services as vendors to LCS.

The Florida Commission on Ethics found no conflict of interest, but stated, “in an abundance of caution, you should refrain from voting as a Board member on any measure affecting a member” of Associated Building Contractors of North Florida.

The opinion also stated that in “the event that such a vote arises, you should comply with the steps outlined in Section 112.3143(3)(a) (i.e., abstain from the vote, publicly disclose your reason for abstaining prior to the vote, and properly file a voting conflict memorandum within 15 days of the vote).”

7 Responses to "LCS Board Member Will Not Vote on Construction Related Issues"

  1. Can anyone explain to me why DeeDee has not stepped down? She should submit her resignation letter tomorrow to Mr.Hanna. Our community and our governor must step-in! Deedee does not step foot on our campuses, has no relationships with our administrators, does not fight for her districts resources, has spent her career lobbying for the same $ that public education is fighting for, and is unable to VOTE on her biggest job duty due to a conflict of interest.

    What does it take? Can we afford to wait till the next election? Will we have portables back on District 4 school campuses because she allowed her districts portion of capital outlay resources to be redirected to other schools outside of District 4. She says she supports music education but her per pupil portion Of Mr.Hannas handout is significantly smaller than other schools.

    Deedee DO YOU JOB!

  2. Can anyone explain to me what good a school board member is that can’t provide votes and input on construction issues?

    Rocky Hanna has placed himself in charge of construction although he has no credentials to do so. The board doesn’t challenge him on this. Rocky Hannah cost the school district $600,000 with an investigation that the US attorney said was categorically false and close the book on, the school board does not challenge him on this. Rocky Hannah openly dated as a school principal teachers at his school made out with them in the parking lot during planning hours when the relationship was called off by the female teacher Rocky had a bullied the teacher and the teacher was given a settlement with school board funds, taxpayer dollarss,school board does not challenge him on this. Rocky Hanna has openly made fun of students with disabilities he has made off-color remarks about student students of poverty, The school board does not challenge him on this. Rocky Hannah openly appointed people to assist in superintendent jobs paying them $100,000 each or more, never once sending their credentials or advertising the positions so that others could apply, the school board does not challenge him on this. The Leon County teachers are the 46 lowest paid in the state of Florida, the school board does not challenge him on this. The answer is clear when a school board member can no longer take part in a central part of their job construction issues they should step down.

    The sad state of affairs the chaos the political cronyism the enacted hit list the fear the low pay for employees while Hannah’s political allies get hundreds of thousands of dollars

    The handing out of contracts to people who gave Rocky campaign contributions,school board members step up to the plate or please resign.

  3. Another sad chapter of ethical violations DeeDee should step away from the board. Rocky Hanna is conflicted as he hands out construction contracts to people that gave to his campaign, his Assistant Superintendents were appointed as political favors NEVER having to be interviewed, the teachers are the 46th lowest paid in Florida. Double dipping board members, unethical child neglect Superintendent, wake up voters!

  4. WAKE UP District 4. DR has be absent for years, not doing the job District 4 elected her to do. DR already abstained from multiple tough votes, DR abstained from protecting bus routes for her students, DR abstained from the bus compound press conference, DR had abstained from attending events at her district schools, DR abstained from protecting employee health care packages. It is time for a change. Maybe someone who can work “full-time” on behalf of our schools!

  5. I am a Leon County taxpayer who has been concerned over the past several years with the real or perceived lack of integrity in some of our elected officials. There is NO way possible to ever know exactly what motivates an individual in any role they play in their life. What Ms. Rasmussen has done is exactly what all elected officials should do: check with lawyers and the FL Commission on Ethics BEFORE casting any votes or taking a job. Members of our School Board are not expected to be full-time employees of the School District. They are allowed to have lives and jobs outside of their roles – and yes, occasionally, there will be times when they need to abstain from a vote. We don’t elect school board members just to decide who constructs our schools. It happens, but it is hardly a significant part of what they are elected to do. Full disclosure: I am a fan of Ms. Rasmussen’s and have supported her and voted for her in past elections. Her actions as a School Board member in the past has given me the confidence I need as a taxpayer and a voter. Like others, I will continue to watch all of our elected officials and expect them to put the community’s best interest ahead of all else. Everything DeeDee Rasmussen has ever done as an elected official has given me great confidence in her ability to serve us all well. One special note: many thanks to the Tallahassee Reports for taking a look at this issue – and others. The role TR plays adds transparency, accountability and confidence for me in our local governmental entities. Thank you!

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