Plantation Candidate Cleared of Ethics Complaint Filed By Political Opponent


Plantation Commissioner Diana Veltri Bendekovic did not break ethics laws despite accusations by one of her opponents in the March mayoral election, according to state investigators.

I am not going to mention this opponent’s name because I believe the complaint was filed to get him publicity.

The Florida Commission on Ethics staff is recommending that the complaint against Bendekovic be dropped.  The Commission votes on the recommendation in February.

“There is no probable cause to believe that respondent (Bendekovic) violated Secton 112.313 (6), Florida Statutes by misusing her position by accessing restricted areas of City facilities to campaign and solicit support from city employees for her mayoral campaign, the recommendation from the staff to the commission states.

It is signed by Diana Guillemette, advocate for the Florida Commission on Ethics.

Here is the kicker:

“(The man who filed the complaint) advised by telephone that he does not have any ‘first hand’ knowledge of the allegation and that he is unable to provide additional informationThe complaint, he said, is based on ‘rumors’ he heard from City employees.

Rumors.  This candidate had state and city employees running around, wasting time and money “based on rumors.

Despite the fact that the complaint was based on rumors, the state interviewed Commissioner Sharon Uria, former Commissioner Rico Petrocelli (no friend of Bendekovic), City Clerk Susan Slattery, the city Finance Director Herbert Herriman and other employees.

Nobody heard anything.

In fact, when employees asked Bendekovic at a city picnic about the race she told them it was “inappropriate for her to discuss her campaign with city employees during the event, according to the state report.

The candidates for Plantation mayor are Bendekovic, Commissioner Jerry Fadgen and the third candidate, who will remained unnamed here.

(Personal disclosure: My wife gave a small contribution to Bendekovic’s campaign.  I stand behind every word I have written about the Plantation mayor’s race.  Her contribution does nothing to change my views, anymore than my son’s work for a Republican state senator or my other son’s campaigning for Democrats.)

15 Responses to “Plantation Candidate Cleared of Ethics Complaint Filed By Political Opponent”

  1. Finally! says:

    It is scary to think anyone can make an allegation without any basis in fact. Too bad the Sun Sentinel ran the ethics charge front and center months ago (with Diane’s photo) without doing any digging. Hope they now run a correction, because most people will only remember the allegation.

    I do hope most will see that while the “opponent” is a kook with his own agenda, there is more to this story. There is a group hard at work to insure Diane is not elected and her “opponent” has been helpful with the dirty work. Petrocelli was interviewed-why? Uria? Political payback and personal grudges, perhaps?

    Stay strong,Diane and stick to the issues- looking forward to the candidate forums with your real opponent, Jerry.

  2. Plantation says:

    The truth is that Diana and Jerry are good candidates. The other one is a fool who the Sun-Sentinel fell for. You didn’t, Buddy. Good for you.

  3. Old Timer 1234 says:

    Finally, You seem like a person not much different than R. Warren. I am glad Diane was cleared of the complaint. You seem to want to throw mud just like the one who filed the complaint. In faxt you sound alot like Tom Armstrong. Wasn’t it you Tom that put out mailer on Rico weekend before election raising questions about his complaint when at the time it was just being investigated just like Diane’s? Wasn’t it your wife the one who wrote health and dental insurance for you and her for rest of your life, when she was in first term in office on council Now you have Harr and Bendekovic as your chosen two. Have they promised you not to look at the double dip pension your wife is having the city pay for as a unfunded liability? I mean there has to be something that makes you so unbalanced.
    I think Diane will tell you that Sharon’s interview with investigation was helpful to her. So why drag her into it Armstrong? Your’e doing what you do best start rumors? Oh by the way Tom, every election, people have groups that support their candidates and not the other, they just are not as slimey as you.

  4. Bruce Edwards says:

    The race for mayor and council will be decided by the voters in our city. The blogs and the back and forth will not be as effective as knocking on doors and letting your views be known to the public. Good luck!

  5. Angelo Castillo says:


    Without getting too sappy, I’d like to point out the classy way that you chose to handle this issue. False complaint filing by an opponent is one of the oldest and dirtiest tricks in the book. Such a person is not fit to be a neighbor much less a leader.

    Some newspapers choose to give these creeps the publicity they want for free whether the allegation is true or not. I just ran in a race where that tactic was attempted by my opponent. My residents saw through it. But that’s not a result we can rely upon.

    When newspapers refuse to show ethical restraint and report on an allegation without any sort of official action taken they encourage the filing of false complaints during campaigns. That is unethical on multiple levels, and makes newspapers accessories to the culture of corruption.

    Thanks for being a professional.


    Thanks for the complements.

    There was a time when such frivolous reports would not be considered by the mainstream media. Those times have changed.

  6. Plantation Voter says:

    Plantation is a well run city with a lot of development taking place through a recession. The Fashion Square has been redone which means that businesses have trust in the Plantation government. The one closest to the vision of what Plantation has become is Diana Veltri Bendekovic.

  7. Finally! says:

    @ Old Timer 1234. You are incorrectly assuming I am Tom Armstrong (I can assure you, I am not). So let me assume you could possibly be”Bruce Edwards”, putting your real thoughts out there under an alias and then posting your “respectable” comments under your real name.

    Trying to throw us off your trail? The blogs may grant anonymity, but there are many clues in your posts, including how you rise to Councilwoman Uria’s defense any time she is mentioned.

    I am sure the “real” Bruce will now write in to refute this (or the post will disappear, funny how that happens). If I am wrong, then may we both stand corrected.

    Me? I am looking forward to deciding between Jerry and Diane based on their viewpoints and vision for our city. This election isn’t about the Armstrong’s, or even Rico (thank goodness!). Most of the citizens don’t know and don’t care about the petty garbage behind the scenes.

  8. Bruce Edwards says:

    Funny, a friend and I were just speaking today about mean people around election time. Now I have no reason “Finally” to believe you to be anybody other than a made up name. From your tone though you do seem to fit the mean person type.

  9. So Nixionian says:

    It is my hope that whoever is elected as Mayor or to the City Council, will have the courage to move the City forward, to examine and change the way the City does business with its service providers, to examine its relations and expenditures on its employees, take an honest hard look at its unfunded pension liabilities and look for ways to revitalize and improve sevices east of University Drive.

  10. mustbecrazy says:

    For whatever it is worth it won’t be Diane for me. She is not who I would hope for as a mayor. That leaves me with Jerry and Warren. Warren makes some sense one moment and then shoots himself in the foot the next all the while loudly babbling nonsense. So then I am left with Jerry. Has always seemed a nice fellow, but does he have what it takes to lead this city? I am uncertain, but then who else is there? There could have been Bruce, he would have gotten my vote, but he chose not to run. I am sure his personal reasons are just that, personal. But all of the sudden we are hearing from him when we haven’t before, so what office will he be running for? County Commission? Hmmmm
    The other day Bruce mentioned in a blog that people like to play the blame game. So Bruce, (this is tongue in cheek) I blame you for the outcome of the Plantation race, whatever it may be. You will be responsible for the continued downward spiral of Plantation simply by your non-action. Ahhhhhh I feel better now.

  11. Bruce Edwards says:

    Thanks for your kind thoughts. I blog in to Buddy every once in a while. I know when I do someone usually takes a cheap shot, so you get a little gun shy. I am glad you feel better to get it off your chest about me not running. No, I am not thinking about running for office again. When I first ran I thought I could make life better for people. As it turned out, I was not smart enough to change city hall. I try to take the small things God gives to us, and be thankful for them everyday. Do you think I mustbecrazy?

  12. mustbecrazy says:

    Actually I think you might be quite sane. Thanks for the time that you did give. I appreciate that you thought you might be able to change city hall, I am sure you did in some way.

  13. Bruce Edwards says:

    my e-mail address is you write me anytime you want to talk about community. OK?

  14. mustbecrazy says:

    Got it.
    Thanks Bruce, I might just do that.

  15. Diego T. says:

    funny sounds EXACTLY like what you did to Rico when he was running for councilman. Printing hear say from a disgruntled family member. You are no better than the man who wasn’t mentioned.