Judge denies motion to dismiss PAC lawsuit

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2013 at 10:11 AM.

A federal judge has denied motions to dismiss a lawsuit brought against the Board of County Commissioners and several current and former commissioners individually by a local political action committee.

District Judge Richard Smoak denied the motions – including one from a private citizen – in an order just prior to the Independence Day holidays.

Smoak’s one-page order decreed that the motions to dismiss were moot given an amended complaint filed by the attorney for Citizens Improving Gulf County and its president Jim Garth.

The defendants, the BOCC, Commissioners Warren Yeager and Carmen McLemore, former County Commissioner Bill Williams and Port St. Joe resident Lois, a.k.a. Christine or Christy McElroy, have until July 26 to respond to the amended PAC lawsuit.

The attorneys representing the former and current commissioners have already done so, repeating an earlier motion to dismiss for “failure to make a claim.”

Those were the grounds on which the prior motions to dismiss were based.

PAC attorney Marie Mattox was permitted time to amend the complaint and the grounds for the lawsuit remain unchanged. The amended motion primarily revised technical language.

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