Miami-Dade Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho might have violated state law by accepting event tickets and neckties worth more than $100 and failing to initially report the gifts.
The Florida Commission on Ethics announced Wednesday that it had found probable cause that Carvalho violated the gift law, but decided not to take any further action. “[B]ecause Mr. Carvalho was forthcoming, accepted responsibility for the failure to report certain gifts and ultimately reported those gifts on a Form 9 [a quarterly gift disclosure form], the Commission will take no further action on the allegations unless he requests an administrative hearing,” the commission said in a press release.
The gifts included tickets to events featuring Harry Connick Jr. and Kevin Spacey and a two-day cruise benefiting the United Way, the Associated Press reported.
School district spokeswoman Daisy Gonzalez-Diego said Carvalho’s attendance at the events was part of his community outreach efforts.
“The Superintendent has always engaged in practices that directly benefit our students and the school district,” Gonzalez-Diego said. “He has committed the equivalent of two years of his salary to support educational programs. It was clear to the Commission that the Superintendent's attendance at these events was very much aligned with the expectations of his position in supporting organizations that provide services and resources to students and schools. Although his participation in these event was interpreted as part of his community outreach, in an abundance of caution, disclosure forms were submitted to align intent with rule expectation."
The commission also looked into two other allegations that Carvalho failed to report gifts of tickets or event admissions, but dismissed the allegations.