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Pat Shontz

Judge says Madeira Beach City Commission violated Sunshine Law with Housh Ghovaee appointment

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A circuit court judge ruled Tuesday that the Madeira Beach City Commission violated public records laws when it appointed Housh Ghovaee to an open seat. Sixth Judicial Circuit Judge Jack Day said in his decision that the commission violated the Sunshine Law when it filled the vacancy and added that “the appointment of Housh Ghovaee as District 4 commissioner is void ab initio.” The decision leaves the city without a vice mayor, and comes one week before an election to…

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Housh Ghovaee asking voters for full term on Madeira Beach Commission

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Local businessman Housh Ghovaee is asking voters for a chance to serve a full term on the Madeira Beach City Commission. Ghovaee, owner of Clearwater’s Northside Engineering, was appointed to replace Pat Shontz, who had resigned Seat 4 last year during a battle over two controversial development projects, which led to ethics complaints levied against several city officials. “My love for America is greater than my love for self-preservation. That is why I want to do this,” Ghovaee told the Tampa Bay…

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Pat Shontz, former Madeira Beach mayor, dies

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Pat Shontz, a former Madeira Beach mayor and city commissioner, died Thursday at a local hospital, city officials said. “It was a shock,” Madeira Beach Mayor Travis Palladeno said. “She was supposed to come home today. She went in the night.” Palladeno said Shontz was being treated for injuries received in a recent fall.  “She cared. Pat had nothing but love for the city of Madeira Beach,” Palladeno said. “She brought a lot to the table. She’ll be sorely missed.…

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In Madeira Beach, seven seek three seats for mayor, City Commission

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At the close of qualifying Friday, seven candidates are stepping forward to run in municipal elections. Three seats are up for grabs: the mayor and two commissioners: Mayor Travis Palladeno is seeking re-election. He’s being opposed by Margaret Black. Palladeno has served as Madeira Beach mayor since 2011. He represents the city on and is current chair of the Pinellas County Emergency Medical Services Advisory Board. He also represents the city on the county’s Tourist Development Council and the Barrier Island…

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Madeira Beach City Commissioner Elaine Poe resigns

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Elaine Poe, who served four years on the Madeira Beach City Commission, has resigned. Poe turned in her resignation in a three-sentence Dec. 6 email to City Clerk Aimee Servedio: “Due to more bad news today on my husband’s medical condition I am left with no alternative but to resign. “Please make this effective as of Friday. That will give me time to get any city materials, i.e.: IPAD, budgets, etc.  returned to the city.” Poe was up for election…

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Professional group censures, expels Madeira Beach city manager

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The executive board of the International City/County Management Association has publicly censured and permanently expelled Shane Crawford “for conduct that violates the ICMA Code of Ethics.” Expulsion is the most severe punishment the ICMA can impose. “The underlying facts of this case are not in dispute as Mr. Crawford has acknowledged that he is and has been involved in a personal relationship with a city staff member — his executive assistant — since August of last year,” the ICMA wrote to Madeira…

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Madeira Beach legal woes continue

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Last month, two residents filed a lawsuit claiming Madeira Beach commission members broke the state Sunshine Law when they appointed a new member. Now they’ve added more claims to their case. City officials, they say, refused to turn over public records. They also allege commission members used the city attorney as a private pipeline to trade information before they voted to spend tax money to defend themselves against ethics complaints. The citizen complainants, William G. Gay and Cathy P. Moore,…

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