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Sunshine Issue at Play in Firing of Florida Worker


— October 8, 2003

When Florida’s Palm Beach County moved to fire senior secretary Lee Ellen Dascott from its Department of Community Services last year, the 13-year government worker exercised her right to appeal to a county panel.

The pre-termination conference panel upheld the firing, which was based on Dascott’s act of bringing a tape recorder into a meeting with her supervisor. But Dascott, now 43, does not know why the panel made its decision. That’s because the members deliberated behind closed doors.

In a case that could overturn dozens of firings of the past four years, Dascott’s attorney, Frederick W. Ford, is scheduled to argue Dec. 3 before the 4th District Court of Appeal that the closed deliberations violated Florida’s Government-in-the-Sunshine Act. Ford argues in a brief filed with the court that the termination must be rescinded and Dascott must be reinstated with full back pay.

Read more about this interesting case here from the Miami Daily Business Review via Law.com.


When Florida’s Palm Beach County moved to fire senior secretary Lee Ellen Dascott from its Department of Community Services last year, the 13-year government worker exercised her right to appeal to a county panel.

The pre-termination conference panel upheld the firing, which was based on Dascott’s act of bringing a tape recorder into a meeting with her supervisor. But Dascott, now 43, does not know why the panel made its decision. That’s because the members deliberated behind closed doors.

In a case that could overturn dozens of firings of the past four years, Dascott’s attorney, Frederick W. Ford, is scheduled to argue Dec. 3 before the 4th District Court of Appeal that the closed deliberations violated Florida’s Government-in-the-Sunshine Act. Ford argues in a brief filed with the court that the termination must be rescinded and Dascott must be reinstated with full back pay.

Read more about this interesting case here from the Miami Daily Business Review via Law.com.

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