Commissioner Jack Porter Silent About Who Paid for Her Travel Expenses to Progressive Conferences

Commissioner Jack Porter Silent About Who Paid for Her Travel Expenses to Progressive Conferences

City Commissioner Jack Porter will not reveal who paid for certain travel expenses for her to attend conferences in 2023 sponsored by Local Progress, a far-left progressive group that encourages locally elected officials to promote certain policy positions.

We know that taxpayers paid for some expenses, but other expenses were not submitted for reimbursement. So who paid?

Did Porter personally pay for the expenses? Did her political campaign? Did Local Progress or another third party pay?

Porter is not talking.

Commissioner Porter has also been quiet about her association with the group despite the fact that she is listed as an organizing member in Florida. TR could find no mentions by Porter about Local Progress on her social media accounts, website, or in her commissioner biographical information.

In February, TR reported that Porter was one of over 300 members of Local Progress that signed a resolution related to the Israel-Palestine conflict.

When asked about the resolution, Porter never responded.

After public information requests revealed that expenses for trips to attend Local Progress events in Washington D.C. in March, 2023 and in St. Louis, Missouri in September, 2023 were only paid in part by city taxpayers, TR made phone calls and sent emails requesting information about expenses by third parties.

However, Porter and her office refused to answer any questions.

Local Progress   

During research related to Local Progress, TR discovered that the group has a history of paying expenses for local officials to attend conferences.

For example, City & State reported in 2023 that New York City “Council Member Althea Stevens got airfare and hotel expenses paid for the Local Progress conference in Denver.” After the City & State investigation, Stevens amended her financial disclosure to indicate that Local Progress paid between $1,000 and $5,000 for airfare and lodging to attend the “progressive conference that took place in Denver last year.”

In addition, Council Member Tiffany Cabán went to Denver and Portland conferences and failed to disclose that Local Progress paid over $2,000 in lodging expenses. Caban amended her financial disclosure form after the City & State reporting.

Based on the information received by TR, there were no city reimbursed lodging expenses for Commissioner Porter for a Washington D.C. trip related to a Local Progress event from March 7 – 11, 2023. In addition, there were no city reimbursed expenses for lodging for a St. Louis, Missouri trip related to a Local Progress event from September 6-10, 2023.

Has Porter Disclosed Any Third Party Expenses?

Florida has a gift law that requires public officers to disclose gifts to the Florida Commission on Ethics (FCOE) via a Quarterly Gift Disclosure form (Form 9).

In 2013, the FCOE released an opinion based on a question related to travel expenses for the Mayor of Jacksonville, Florida:

“Would expenses of the Mayor’s travel to conferences and events paid directly by others be considered gifts to the City, or gifts or honorarium event-related expenses given to him personally?”

The FCOE response:

“Under the circumstances presented, the Mayor’s travel was a gift or honorarium event-related expenses given to him personally and subject to the acceptance and disclosure provisions in Sections 112.3148 and 112.3149, Florida Statutes.”

In addition, the FCOE stated in the opinion that “Since the gift law was first enacted in 1990, we have never concluded that a public officer had not received a gift when he traveled at the expense of someone other than his agency.”

Via a phone call, Florida Commission on Ethics confirmed to TR that Commissioner Jack Porter has not filed any gift disclosure forms covering 2023.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

11 Responses to "Commissioner Jack Porter Silent About Who Paid for Her Travel Expenses to Progressive Conferences"

  1. If Tallahassee has any hope of moving in a positive direction, we Must vote Out Jack Porter and Jeremy Matlow NOW!!

  2. Something tells me Pizza Boy is nervous. Perhaps a closer look at the Marxists’ books are in order.

    Hey Jeremy… what’s in you closet? BTW: your pizza blows.

  3. Jeremy Matlow uses terms like ‘bias’ and ‘speculative’ while his politics revolve around distorting facts and manipulating residents. Taxpayers pay this guy to speculate and make s**t up on Twitter.

    It’s worth noting that Matlow himself and his progressive gang contributed more than $5,000 to their pet project (the Porter campaign), and Matlow’s aide, Ryan Ray, is compensated $100,000+ each year by Tallahassee taxpayers to serve as Porter’s campaign manager. The city manager should cut out their salary.

  4. Did you ever think maybe she isn’t answering you because your blog is biased and you’re being paid by the City Manager via “advertising”?

    Why does Tallahassee Reports accept tax dollars only to write critically about Commissioners that aren’t favored by the establishment?

    Your public records request show $30k plus in travel from other Commissioners and you are silent on it.

    You didn’t even request anything from the Mayor, I assume he’s off limits if you want the payments to continue.

    This is sad, Steve. Speculative accusations aren’t journalism.

    You have the right to be a political pundit, but it shouldn’t be paid for by city executives with a political agenda.

    1. Hi Commissioner Matlow,

      The Commissioner Porter story is about travel expenses paid by third parties and those expenses not being disclosed per Florida law. I have repeatedly reached out to Commissioner Porter with no response. Also, I have researched all city commissioners – including you and the Mayor – and I cannot find any travel expenses in the last two years that were paid by third parties other than those related to Porter. I will continue to look, but if you have some info or tips on this issue please forward to me and I will investigate.

      Thanks for reading TR and taking the time to comment.

      Thank You
      Steve Stewart
      Tallahassee Reports

  5. Frank – what Porter is doing is worse because she’s pretending to “clean up” and styling herself as trustworthy. Gillum and the others were more honest about who they were. Porter is lying to herself. Mirror Mirror

  6. This thing with Porter is exactly what was going on with Andy Gillum and his being paid a salary by People For The American Way, while on the City Commission. He was doing their bidding…same as Porter and Local Progress. It is plain illegal and she should be removed from the City Commission. Gillum never ‘caught heat’ until Erwin Jackson called him out. He should have been removed as well but his skin color saved him.

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