A complaint of wrongdoing against two Walton County Commissioners by Destin Attorney Jennifer Sullivan has been amended.
Sullivan filed an amended complaint removing the argument of wrongdoing by two commissioners after they failed to disclose ex parte communication papers, according to a press release issued by the county.
"Since the filing of the case, it has been found that both Commissioners (Cecilia) Jones and (Tony) Anderson did file the correct paperwork with the Clerk of Courts at the appropriate time," said Walton County Administrator Larry Jones. "It is our understanding that based on the request made to the Clerk's office, the attachments regarding ex parte communication were requested for three commissioners, but not for District 2 Commissioner Cecilia Jones and District 5 Commissioner Tony Anderson."
Sullivan said that she and the county attorney talked at length before deciding to file a motion to amend the complaint.
District 1 Commissioner Bill Chapman, District 3 Commissioner Melanie Nipper, and District 4 Commissioner Sara Comander filed ex parte communications disclosure forms that clearly state "see attached list" in declaring their ex parte communications, and what the communication is about.
However, Anderson's and Jones' forms for the same days state "varied" under date of ex parte communication, person communicating, and substance.
This became an issue for Sullivan when she requested the forms while representing clients. Since Anderson's and Jones' declaration forms do not state "see attached," and Walton County Clerk's office did not indicate there were any attachments, Sullivan believed there were none.
"Because of my complaint, the county attorney told me she had advised the clerk that going forward, Walton County is changing how they handle requests for information," said Sullivan. "I thought to amend was the right thing to do. At the end of the day, if they change their policy, everyone wins."
Sullivan's second complaint of failure to hold a quasi-judicial hearing for the Summer House project will go forward.