Facing public corruption charges, commissioner resigns

Andreana Jackson (North Bay Village)

NORTH BAY VILLAGE, Fla. – North Bay Village Commissioner Andreana Jackson resigned on Wednesday after admitting to using an educational event funded by local business owners to earn a consultancy fee.

Jackson solicited about $13,500 in donations from local businesses to support a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math event on November 2017 at the Treasure Island Elementary School, investigators said. She managed to earn a $2,950 consultancy fee for hiring Melissa Frantz as an event planner, prosecutors said.

“The elected official was charged with using the prestige of office for personal gain which goes to the core of what constitutes unethical conduct,” said Jose Arroyo, the executive director of the Miami-Dade County Commission on Ethics and Public Trust.

Jackson pleaded guilty to charges of extortion by officers of the state, a first-degree misdemeanor, and exploitation of official position, a second-degree misdemeanor. She was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and one year of probation.

Prosecutors ordered Jackson to stay away from running for public office for a year and to pay a $3,950 fine ― the return of the $2,950 consultancy fee and $1,000 to cover investigation costs.

“The prospect of a public official soliciting funds to benefit school children and pocketing a portion as a commissioner is both wrong and offensive,” Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said.

About the Author:

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.