Judge Rules That The Volusia County's Personnel Board
Was In Violation Of The County Charter

VolusiaExposed Uncovered This Over Three (3) Years Ago

October 17, 2015
"The minute you read something that you can't understand, you can almost be sure that it was drawn up by a lawyer." - Will Rogers

County Personnel Board Was Not
In Compliance With The County Charter

In the Spring of 2012 - VolusiaExposed.Com attended and video recorded the County Personnel Boards of Beach Patrol Capt. Rich Gardner & Deputy Scott Flesch.

In our opinion, both officers (Gardner & Flesch) were "railroaded" by the county administration. With that said, we invite you to review the documents and videos for yourself, so that you can come to your own conclusions.

Shortly after attending Gardner's and Flesch's personnel boards - VolusiaExposed became concerned that former County Councilman, Dwight Lewis' assignment on the County Personnel Board was a violation of the Volusia County Charter.

Our concerns centered around the Volusia County Charter's prohibition of allowing a member of the Personnel Board to serve in another government office or employment. Lewis was also serving on the Volusia County Growth Management Commission.

In response to our concerns - VolusiaExposed.Com posted the following two articles:
Article #1

Article #2

Upon VolusiaExposed contacting Volusia County Attorney Dan Eckert - his initial email response to us was, that he saw no violation of the Volusia County Charter - in that Lewis was serving on both the County's Personnel Board and it's Growth Management Commission.

HOWEVER, upon receiving our follow-up email, which expressed some further clarifications - Eckert sent VolusiaExposed a second email in which he confirmed our suspicions that Lewis' assignment to the County's Personnel Board was indeed a violation of the Volusia County Charter. (Our Opinion)

Eckert further stated within his second email - that Lewis had submitted his resignation to the Volusia County Growth Management Commission.

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Judge Raul A. Zambrano's Ruling

Stuck On Stupid
Volusia County Has A History Of Violating It's Own Charter With Their Personnel Board Appointments

To add insult to injury - this is NOT the first time Volusia County has violated their own charter regarding appointments to their personnel board. Volusia County Corrections Officer Dolores Lopez successfully negated her proposed termination for allegedly failing to report to duty during Hurricane Floyd.

According to a January 8, 2000 Orlando Sentinel article - an administrator from Daytona Beach Community College (currently known as Daytona State College), Robin Courtney had to resign from the personnel board when representatives from the officer's labor union, Teamsters Local 385 discovered that Courtney's employment with a government funded college - prohibited his appointment to the personnel board (prohibition - per the Volusia County Charter).

Within the above linked Orlando Sentinel article - County Attorney Dan Eckert expressed the opinion - that he did not anticipate that any other personnel board hearings would be impacted by Courtney's resignation. We (VolusiaExposed.Com) wonder if Eckert has that same anticipation regarding the resignation of Lewis? (More will be provided on that particular topic - later in this article)

Circuit Court Judge Raul A. Zambrano Rules That Lewis' Assignment To
The County Personnel Board Was Indeed A Violation Of The Volusia County Charter

It's Not Over Until It's Over

Fortunately for Deputy Flesch - the VCSO deputies are also represented by Teamsters Local 385 - and apparently, Local 385 became aware of the Lewis charter violation - causing them to seek relief for Deputy Flesch within the local circuit court.

Recently, VolusiaExposed was advised that last February (2015) - Circuit Court Judge Raul A. Zambrano concluded that Lewis' assignment to the County Personnel Board was indeed a violation of the Volusia County Charter. (Volusia County Merit Rules are incorporated within the County Charter)

Judge Zambrano ruled that Deputy Flesch was entitled to a new impartial personnel board hearing. This civil case is still open as of the posting of this article - and we invite you to visit the Volusia County Clerk of the Court's website for up to date information on this case.

What About Any Other Personnel Boards Involving Lewis?
Will Hell Be Coming To Breakfast?

As stated above - VolusiaExposed attended the April 2012 personnel board of Beach Patrol Capt. Rich Gardner. For the most part, the personnel board cleared Gardner of any misconduct - supporting his guilt in only one minor charge - under a 3-2 vote of the board members. Lewis was one of the votes in support of sustaining that minor charge.

1976 - "The Outlaw Josey Wales"
Will other current, and former Volusia County employees - that had their personnel boards held out of compliance with the County Charter, seek some type of legal redress? Only time will tell.

However, in our opinion - based on our experience in dealing with former Capt. Rich Gardner - he will probably take a "Clint Eastwood" style approach (of course staying within legal parameters) and seek redress from county officials.

Therefore, it's our conclusion - that hell WILL be coming to breakfast for members of the Volusia County administration - should Capt. Gardner ever catch wind of this.

Our only other current comment on this situation is --- Now Spit ! (Watch the above video for the significance of this last statement)

We look forward to your comments on this situation.
Drop us a line to let us know what you think.