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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gov. Scott interviews Gualtieri for interim sheriff



Chief Deputy Bob Gualtieri interviewed with Gov. Rick Scott today as Scott decides who should be interim sheriff of Pinellas County. The applicants include former sheriff Everett Rice, a fellow Republican running against Gualtieri in 2012.

It wasn't on the governor's public schedule, but Gualtieri said today's interview lasted 20 to 25 minutes in Tallahassee. There was no word from Scott on when he will make a decision, but the governor has set an Oct. 15 date to decide.

The topics? "Budget issues, what we've done, general discussion," Gualtieri said.

Retiring Sheriff Jim Coats, who succeeded Rice, has endorsed Gualtieri for the job. Rice said he has yet to hear from Scott about an interview but expects to have one if Scott is "truly serious" about picking the top person for the post.

On another front, Gualtieri said he's received no further word from the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, which recently accused him of violating a federal law banning partisan candidacies among people who oversee federally-funded programs. Gualtieri has rejected the allegation and its demand he resign or quit the campaign.

[Last modified: Monday, September 26, 2011 2:02pm]


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