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Tallahassee ethics officer demands apology from Mayor John Dailey

Posted at 6:12 PM, Oct 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-23 18:12:12-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Tallahassee Independent Ethics Board Officer Julie Meadows-Keefe is firing back just one week after people in the community called for her resignation.

Earlier this year, Meadows-Keefe announced her plans to step down in February. Now she's saying it could be sooner, if the city meets some of her demands.

Meadows-Keefe's attorney laid out nine demands in a letter sent to the Tallahassee City Attorney this week.

That list of demands included a public apology from Mayor John Dailey and it asked for the City of Tallahassee to cut Julie Meadows-Keefe a check for $450,000.

"Something needs to happen to repair her reputation," said Marie Mattox, attorney for Meadows-Keefe.

That's why Tallahassee Independent Ethics Officer Julie Meadows-Keefe sent a letter of demands to Tallahassee City Attorney Cassandra Jackson.

"It's just a letter speaking about what the ethics officer views has happened to her and how she would like the city to respond," said Jackson.

Shamed, humiliated, berated and embarrassed. That's what the letter says Meadows-Keefe has felt since Mayor John Dailey took office.

"The mayor began to go after Mrs. Keefe and it has culminated into berated and downright harassment of her over time," said Mattox.

Mattox says the most important demand is that Mayor John Dailey apologize to her client publicly.

"It has damaged her reputation, it has damaged her personally, professionally," said Mattox.

Mayor John Dailey stands behind his actions, saying in part "I have an obligation and a responsibility to express my concerns when appropriate."

Other demands include a positive letter of recommendation as Meadows-Keefe looks for a new job, health insurance, and a check for almost half a million dollars.

"Some of that is to compensate her for the damage that he has already done to her reputation," said Mattox.

But Jackson says their hands are tied because the Independent Ethics Board isn't a part of the City of Tallahassee and the mayor is also free to say what he wants.

Despite the fact that Mattox put an end of the week deadline on the list of demands, the city says it's open to discussion.

"We're also open to hearing and listening and determining whether or not we need to take some action," said Jackson.

The letter said that if the demands are met, Meadows-Keefe will resign after the last meeting of this year.

As of right now, her resignation will take effect in February of 2020.