Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:41 a.m.
Lt. Gov-elect Jennifer Carroll's ethics record may have looked squeaky clean compared to Gov-elect Rick Scott and his former company's record setting Medicare fraud, but it appears that Carroll's company may have been involved in scamming a government program too. The Florida Times-Union reports that Carroll's companies may have fudged records claiming to have an office in Duval County in order to take advantage of a government program.
Carroll was previously a state legislator, but also runs a consulting firm, JC & 3N. The firm was accepted into the Jacksonville Small and Emerging Business program in Duval County that sets aside county-contracts for local small business. The only catch was that the business needed to have had an office in Duval for atleast three years. JC & 3N claimed that they had an office at 8553-1 Argyle Business Loop from "3/14/2002 to 3/13/2007." Carroll is a resident of neighboring Clay County.
Problem is that David Hodges, owner of Fine Tooth Comb Investigations, was actually operating a business from that address from 2003 until 2005. State records back him up, and he claims to have no knowledge of why Carroll's company would claim the space as their own.
Carroll's company claimed to have subleased the space from Rivers Constructors, though that company did not relocate to Duval until 2005.
Caroll originally applied to the program in 2006 (after the previous tenants moved out), but when City workers talked to owners of the business park they were told that "no one goes to the office, nor is there furniture inside."
The company reapplied to the program a month later and was promptly accepted. However the company never sought a government contract through the program.