Gambling and Big Sugar’s School Board Candidate: Franklin Sands



Big Sugar, state gambling interests and Tallahassee lobbyists usually aren’t interested in the Broward County School Board.

This time around they are because one of their pals is running:  Franklin Sands.

Special interests with no obvious connections to the School Board poured thousands into Sands’ School Board campaign.  They were not particularly concerned whether Johnny or Jill in Broward learn.  They were interested in Sands’ vote in the Legislature in the last session as a Democratic state representative from Weston.

How else can you explain $500 check after check from businesses like North Florida Racing in Jacksonville, a dog track?

Hey, Franklin aren’t kennel clubs controversial with animal rights folks and others who love dogs?


Franklin Sands: Lobbyists’ Friend

His opponent in the countywide race is Republican School Board member Donna Korn and a third little-known candidate, Andrew Luciani.

Korn has raised only $6,150.  Sands has raised $41,366.  Luciani raised nothing, just like in his last School Board bid.

I counted roughly 10 percent of Sands’ $41,366 in contributions from gaming interests.  I probably missed some.

And what about Big Sugar? When they were not dumping chemicals into Florida wetlands they were dumping $500 checks into Sands’ campaign.

There was at least $1,500 from Clewiston-based sugar interests in December and $1,000 in March from another Palm Beach County sugar business.

At least another $7,200 are from Tallahassee lobbyists or their families.

His campaign coffers are filled with lots of other special interest money — $2,000 from Southern Wine & Spirits and subsidiaries;  $500 from the Florida Podiatry PAC; $250 from a chiropractor PAC  and $500 from Dosal Tobacco; $1,000 from the Florida Panthers and the arena; $500 from the Florida Medical Association; $500 from the Communications Workers of America; $500 from a trial lawyer’s PAC; $500 from a time share industry PAC…it goes on and on.

You get the gist.

19 Responses to “Gambling and Big Sugar’s School Board Candidate: Franklin Sands”

  1. John Fusaro says:

    Buddy, look at all elections especially local. Talk about special interest. The local candidates are fueled by special interest.

  2. Tiny Bubbles says:

    This is a disgrace. I realize that lobbyists always give to campaigns, but some candidates have the guts to turn down odious contributors like Big Sugar. Is gambling going to hold out the false promise again that they will save our schools?

  3. BTU Shop Steward says:

    Franklin Sands is running to get his son-in-law Angel Gomez a principal’s job. Angel has been unable to do it on his own. That and the pension is why Sands wants to be on the Board.

  4. concernedcitizen says:

    Frank sand is a good man and a good legislature.he will be a good school board member. he can help the students of broward county.

  5. heckler and jeckle says:

    Frank Sands wants on the school board so his son in law Alex Heckler of LSN lobby, gets all the business. Georgie Platt and baby Platt joined LSN to help. dirty money all over tha place.

  6. Ok . says:

    Great …sounds like he has a lot of support and most know he is a great guy. He will do amazing things on the school board and I look forward to voting for him. I don’t think his contributions define his election I think that he defines it as a solid representive of our state. How else can you explain it ? If we were to define every candidate by their contributions then every elected official should be under scrutiny.

  7. Str8 Talk says:

    Rosalind (arrested 10 x’s) Osgood was connected to now disgraced Senator Mandy Dawson, running a foundation tied to her. Now, she wants us to trust her on the school board. I DONT THINK SO.

  8. Franklin and Bernie says:

    Sands is running because he needs a job. He got greedy and invested with Madoff and lost all his money. He was term limited as a State rep.
    Why would anyone vote for this guy?
    Just what we need more corruption on the school board.

  9. get real!! says:

    Sands is a genuine guy and means well. Btw, who cares…central broward always elect scandal tainted elected officials. That doesn’t surprise me.

  10. Get real? says:

    Hey Get Real,
    Nice guy or not, truth is that Sands is running for two reasons:
    1. To help his school board lobbyist stepson, Alex Heckler, make money.
    2. To help is son in law become a principal.
    Just ask Mrs. Sands. She will tell ya!

  11. Not quite says:

    Sands was not a Madoff victim and is far from broke. Sands pulled out most of his principal over the years he was with Bernie which is why he was given notice of a potential clawback. There is a data base of where you can look up madoff victims by their city, maybe Korn should send those in Broward a mailer about this….

  12. Tamarac Talk says:

    Ok I don’t have the time to research this so maybe someone here has a good memory, I believe that Laurie Levinson had a lot of donations from big sugar which I found very puzzling two years ago. Am I wrong?

  13. Just Beachy says:

    Andrew Luciani is THE school board candidate our schools need – in one sweet and total package. I have known him to be compassionate yet disciplined, firm in his decisions, quite intelligent, assertive when needed, a big picture leader who has the uncanny ability to focus on details of great importance, a man of character who remains committed to children and families, has great integrity and carries himself with dignity at all times, loves humor, admires talent and the creative process, is
    honest, highly experienced in education, dedicated to the mission of our school system – since as a principal back then, he helped create it, is highly accountable, responsive, LEGITIMATE, caring, in summay, a born leader with a proven track record of outstanding results. And, I could go on! He himself will admit to his faults but I have not learned of many that are not common to us all!
    He is NOT out for special intesrests or financial gain. He befriends easily but wisely. Andy would be the very best fit for many reasons – as those who worked with and for him will tell you. He also knows where many of the skeletons are buried and what to do to repair the broken parts of that old, cranking machine we know as our school system. Several school board members from our past and many newbies start out focused on The Students but the political climate and pressures to conform to the majority vote process, choke that original passion to do what is right for students, almost completely out of many of their major decisions.
    We, in Broward, need him and more similar to him. He is the type of leader we require to assure excellence in teachers and personnel as well as manage and lead our system. We continue to cry for someone to have what it takes, yet how many will ever take the time or interest to find out about this outstanding candidate? Stranger things have happened and in Broward, I have learned to never say never BUT this sincere and humble man, Andrew Luciani, a teacher, principal, area director, superintendent in another system, and much more, IS here now stepping back up to the plate, FOR our schools and our students. He is, in my vast educational and political experience of over 30 years in NY and Florida, THE CANDIDATE we should all recognise as a rare gift and NOT allow him to slip past us! Rather let us band together and focus our energies to spread the word and try really hard to get Andy elected.
    If we want to truly help reshape and redirect the system so it matches it’s true purpose; to educate our children and adults to the highest levels possible,within the finest enviornment anywhere, using the very best of resources, then make sure we get Andy elected!
    Let’s Do It Right, FINALLY, for the Right Reasons with the Right Man to do this very challenging job!!
    Please, do your research then just get everyone you know who cares about our students and schools, behind Andy Luciani to get him on the school board and then keep him on the school board so our students finally get the opportunities they so deserve and have not had in many, many years!
    Note: Yes, we are making the news with great awards and recognitions lately so think how much further ahead we will go with a man like Andy there to push on the part of students and parents!
    The teachers and other staff have UNIONS to fight for them. Who fights for our students? Not many, as our unethical, shady past reveals.
    You can bet that Andy will. Let’s Work to get the Right Person elected! And, that is Andrew Luciani!
    PS…I am so sorry if any typos persisted!

  14. Twilly says:

    The politicians who come back home from Tallahassee and win local office have a poor track record. Eggelletion, Jenne went to jail. Forman can’t get it done at the courthouse, which is still 30 years behind the times. Graber was a bad commissioner who was only interested in moving to Congress. Scott was never there. Sands would be the same non-starter. He’s an old man who is only running for the pension

  15. Steve Schwinn says:

    Andrew Luciani, show some class and buy an ad instead of using the postings section for free advertising. Buddy should really replace such blatant shills with the phrase “Buy an AD”

  16. You have to be kidding. says:

    Seriously Buddy? I have read your blog quite a bit over the years but do not generally comment. This one I have to comment on because it is so ridiculous. If Sands worked as an accountant in south beach over the last 8 years, regardless of if they have any gain – the collegues and business associates with whom he dealt would donate or support whatever venture he chose to pursue next. This is no different… But by your logic, lets fault him for getting money from people who know he will do a good job or respect the job he has done. I am unsure why you choose to pick on Sands every chance you get… there are so many corrupt people- choose one of them- not the honest, hardworking ones who we actually need in office. And all of you negative writers on here- you are all just silly…you judge people for losing money – well I hope for your sake you are not in those shoes. As a local resident and business person, I appreciate that Sands is running. I have met him a few times at events over the last two years and I think he is an upstanding person. I do not know Korn or the other guy but I dont want to keep someone the governor appointed in office and I think it is comendable that Sands is choosing to help. If it is because he needs money- then good for him, I hope it pays well. If it is for the greater good- I am glad for that too as I know my kids will benefit in the future.

  17. Earn the money David says:

    Hell yeah David Brown you tell him.

    Just curious, David maybe you can answer this, why does Franklin’s Aide as State Rep keep going to campaign events in the day time? Is that proper use of a State Employee.

    ProTip: Tell Franklin to put the Depends in the trunk of his car next time he parks at an event, despite it being in a wall mart bag you can see the writing on the wrapper.

  18. I pee freely says:

    I guess with Franklin, it just Depends.

  19. Mark Halpert says:

    Andrew Luciani is better for our kids, their teachers and the community — simple as that.