Gov. Rick Scott has agreed to pay attorney Steven R. Andrews $700,000 in taxpayer money to settle seven public records lawsuits. The suits allege Gov. Scott and members of his staff violated state law by creating private email accounts to withhold documents in violation of state public records laws.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, the settlement is precedent-setting. It is the first time in state history that a sitting governor and attorney general have been sued and agreed to settle allegations that they violated Florida’s public records laws.
Andrews received a court order from a California judge ordering Google to reveal all IP addresses for correspondence to and from the governor’s private Gmail account. After the judgement, Gov. Scott directed his attorney to settle rather than reveal the documents.