Jacksonville, FL - Jacksonville Democratic State Representative Kimberly Daniels is facing a new state ethics investigation from her time as a Jacksonville City Councilwoman.
Daniels previously had a case with the Florida Commission on Ethics dismissed because of a jurisdictional issue. The same allegations in that complaint have now been brought forward again, in a new case.
The Commission has found probable cause to believe Daniels filed inaccurate financial disclosure forms in 2012, 2013, and 2014, which is while she was on the City Council. The investigative report says the complainant alleges Daniels did not disclose around $1 million in mortgages on properties in Broward and Duval, and did not disclose that she purchased time-share properties in Daytona Beach and Orlando.
Daniels says the true owner of the properties is her church. She founded “Spoken Word Ministries, Inc” in 2016 and is the President of “Kimberly Daniels Ministries International, Inc”. She says Spoken Word gets the income from both entities, which are not-for-profits, although she has a “lot of authority”.
The investigative report says property records show Daniels owns one Jacksonville property, Kimberly Daniels Ministries owns on Jacksonville property, and Spoken Word Ministries owns several Jacksonville properties and one in Davie. Daniels says the church makes mortgaged payments for the properties, not her. She is one of the guarantors, and says there are three others as well.
She further says Spoken Word has owned time-shares in Orlando and Daytona Beach for years. The investigative report shows that one at least a couple of those properties, Daniels is specifically listed as an owner. There are also a couple of properties that had outstanding maintenance fee debts in the affected years.
Daniels did disclose a $1 million life insurance policy, which she says the church pays premiums on.
A letter from her attorney says the interests of her church need to be disclosed because she holds them as a trustee of the church, but Daniels is nonetheless amending the reports in question because of this complaint.
“We believe that it is important for the Commission to take into consideration the amendments which are being made which demonstrate Ms. Daniels’ willingness to disclose her relationship to the properties, notwithstanding that she has been advised by her accountant that it was not necessary for them to be disclosed on the reports,” says the letter from Daniels’ attorney Ronald Meyer.
An order filed today by the Commission finds probable cause to support these complaints and orders a public hearing. That could lead to resolution through a stipulation, settlement, or consent order.