It’s a story seven months in the making. Riviera Beach city council members have been part of secret meetings, possibly violating Florida Sunshine Law, and have possibly destroyed public records.
Councilman Terence Davis said he did not professionally delete the text messages WPTV requested off his city-issued cellphone. The city has not been able to provide an answer as to who did it.
Then WPTV asked for Davis’s phone and the city said it fell into the ocean.
Contact 5 Investigator Wanda Moore spoke with Governor Rick Scott on Thursday. Scott was in Riviera Beach for a rally.
Reporter: “People ask me here almost on a daily basis where is the Governor’s office. What’s your response to that? Are you watching?”
Scott: “Sure. You know, of course in this job, you try to follow everything you can, make sure you can help locally as much as you can. We always follow and do everything we can to make sure we can help our local communities. You know I work with local elected officials all across the state.”
Reporter: “Is this something you’re taking seriously?”
Scott: “Of course, you look at everything that happens around the state and do everything you can do be helpful.”
WPTV’s Political Expert Brian Crowley said that is pretty much a non-answer. Crowley said either Scott doesn’t know about the situation in Riviera Beach or he doesn’t want to discuss the details.
In November, when Scott was in Riviera Beach last, we asked him about the possible Sunshine Law violations in the city.
“Here is how I always look at those things: You have to take all those things seriously. You have to take Sunshine Law violations seriously,” Scott said in November.
Crowley said there is little the governor could do in this situation.
To file criminal charges against any of the public officials would be the job of the State Attorney.
Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg said his office is watching the situation in Riviera Beach closely.