News Release: Associated Press
July 29, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- A Florida judge is upholding a law that allows elected officials to place their assets in a blind trust instead of reporting each investment publicly.
Leon County Circuit Judge John Cooper on Monday ruled that politicians can use a blind trust and still comply with a 1976 constitutional amendment that requires officials to disclose their finances. The Florida Legislature passed a law last year authorizing the use of a blind trust.
Gov. Rick Scott is the only public official who has been using a blind trust, although this year he disclosed details about his finances when he qualified for re-election.
Jim Apthorp, a former top aide to the late Gov. Reubin Askew, said in a statement he would consult with his attorneys after whether to appeal Cooper's ruling.
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