Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Florida health Secretary Holly Benson resigns, could run for state attorney general

TALLAHASSEE — One of Gov. Charlie Crist's top health care advisers abruptly resigned her state job Thursday, a strong signal that Republican Holly Benson plans to run for attorney general.

If, as expected, Benson seeks the Cabinet post, she will be challenging Jeff Kottkamp, the man Crist picked as his lieutenant governor in 2006.

Benson, secretary of the Agency for Health Care Administration since February 2008, sent her employees an e-mail in which she announced her resignation.

She cited "some opportunities that lie ahead, and I regret that because of those opportunities I will no longer be able to serve as your secretary. I have submitted my resignation."

Benson, 38, a lawyer from Pensacola, served in the state House from 2000 to 2007, and played an instrumental role in writing an overhaul of Florida's laws governing the Medicaid program and the operation of the state court system.

There are signs the Benson-Kottkamp race could intensify quickly. Kottkamp's political adviser, Rocky Pennington, last month sought all of Benson's official e-mail correspondence at the agency, which is public record under state law. Such requests are common in campaigns as each side vacuums the record for damaging political information.

The agency told Pennington on Thursday he must pay an up-front fee of $20,000 before the agency will review all 48,000 e-mail messages, at a rate of one minute per e-mail. (Messages to health care officials could contain personal medical information that is exempt from disclosure.)

Florida health Secretary Holly Benson resigns, could run for state attorney general 10/15/09 [Last modified: Thursday, October 15, 2009 11:17pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Mandarin Hide celebrates 7 years serving craft cocktails in St. Petersburg

    Bars & Spirits

    ST. PETERSBURG

    With its mascot, a mounted buffalo head named Manny, decked out in streamers and a shiny party hat, the Mandarin Hide celebrated seven years of serving cocktails on Central Avenue last Thursday night.

    Mandarin Hide’s mascot, a buffalo head named Manny, donned streamers and a shiny party hat as the bar celebrated seven years of serving cocktails last week.
  2. Florida education news: Working conditions, school choice, teacher housing and more

    Blogs

    WORK CONDITIONS: Two teachers at a Pinellas County middle school request transfers out, saying the campus has become "hostile and racially charged." The …

    Pinellas Park Middle School
  3. Forecast: Break out those sweaters, Tampa Bay, as cooler weather just a day away

    Weather

    Tampa Bay residents will finally be able to break out their sweaters and boots this week, but not until enduring yet another humid, rainy day to start the workweek.

    Tampa Bay's 7-day forecast. [WTSP]
  4. Justin Timberlake in Super Bowl halftime show for first time since 'wardrobe malfunction'

    Celebrities

    Justin Timberlake has finally been invited back to the Super Bowl halftime show, 14 years after the "wardrobe malfunction" with Janet Jackson caused a national controversy.

    Singer Janet Jackson covers her breast as Justin Timberlake holds part of her costume after her outfit came undone during the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXVIII in Houston in 2004. The NFL announced Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017, that Timberlake will headline the Super Bowl halftime show Feb. 4 in Minnesota, 14 years after the "wardrobe malfunction" with Janet Jackson cause a national controversy. [Associated Press]
  5. Here's what happened when 30 high school sophomores gave up their phones for a day

    K12

    LUTZ — They were everywhere at Steinbrenner High School. Teens with panic-stricken faces, furiously slapping one thigh, then the other.

    Grace Hayes, 15, left, and Kai'Rey Lewis, 15, talk and text friends after having a discussion about smartphone technology in Tiffany Southwell's English Literature class at Steinbrenner High last week. Southwell asked theme to give up their phones for a day and write about it. For Lewis, the ride home that day "was the longest bus ride in my life." [OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]