Elected officials welcome investigation into where they live

Florida Gov Rick Scott investigating whether politicians living in their districts

Author: Bob Norman, Reporter, bnorman@Local10.com
Published On: Jul 18 2013 05:09:30 PM EDT   Updated On: Jul 19 2013 12:44:21 PM EDT
PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. -

Florida House Democratic Leader Perry Thurston said Thursday he welcomes a criminal investigation into whether he lives in his district, something required by the Florida Constitution.

"The governor should do what he needs to do," said Thurston, D-Plantation.

Local 10 found several elected officials in South Florida who appeared to be living outside their districts. Senate Ethics Chairman Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater, filed a criminal complaint last week, and Gov. Rick Scott then announced he was reviewing the matter.

"I'm pretty confident he'll find I'm a resident in the district," Thurston said.

Thurston said he lives in a rundown home on Northwest 7th Terrace in Fort Lauderdale (pictured, above right). But Local 10 found him staying at his long-time family home in a more upscale neighborhood in Plantation just outside his district.

The governor called Local 10's investigation a "serious issue" and put his top lawyer on the case to see if any laws have been broken. 

Rep. Hazelle Rogers, D-Lauderdale Lakes, said Scott should look into the issue. Rogers owns a house outside her district but said she lives in a condominium inside it 95 percent of the time.

"Some of your neighbors say you aren't there very often," said Local 10's Bob Norman.

"I don't see them, so we could have that conversation later," replied Rogers.