‘No violation’ in complaint against commission candidate

Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 02:22 PM.

The U.S. Office of Special Counsel has found no violation in its investigation of a complaint filed against John Grantland, candidate for the District 3 seat on the Board of County Commissioners.

The complaint was filed alleging violations under the Hatch Act.

The Hatch Act “restricts the political activity of individuals principally employed by state, county or municipal executive agencies in connection with programs financed in whole or in part by loans or grants made by the United States or a federal agency,” detailed Nadia Pluta with the Hatch Act Unit of the Office of Special Counsel, in a letter.

An officer or employee of a state or local agency is subject to the Hatch Act if, as a normal and foreseeable incident of his principal position or job, he performs duties in connection with an activity financed in whole or in part by federal funds, Pluta continued.

The complaint filed with the Office of Special Counsel alleges that Grantland, as director of Port St. Joe Public Works, was in violation of the Hatch Act due to two federal grants the city received.

One grant was for improvements to wastewater treatment facilities; the second a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) for the new center being built at North Florida Child Development across U.S. Highway 98 from the Gulf/Franklin Center.

The CDBG was to build a road to the center and fund other infrastructure.

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