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BEFORE THE

TATE OF FLORIDA
COMMI ION ON ETHICS
In re PATRICIA ATKIN -GRAD,
DATE FILED
IJUL 31 2013
COMMISSION ON E ! : i i C ~
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Complaint No. 12-295
Respondent.
PUBLIC REPORT
Based on the preliminary investigation of this complaint and on the recommendation of
the Commission's Advocate, the Commission on Ethics finds that there is no probable cause to
believe the Respondent, as a member of the Tamarac City Commission, violated Sections
112.3148(4) and l J 2.3148(8), Florida tatutes, by accepting a prohibited gift from a real estate
developer and by failing to disclose a gift with a value in excess of $100, as alleged in this
complaint.
Accordingly, this complaint is dismissed with the issuance of this public report.
ORDERED by tbe State of Florida Commission on Ethics meeting in executi ve session
on Friday, July 26,2013.
MORGAN R. B ENTLEY
Chair
cc: Mr. Kenneth M. Malnik, Attorney for Respondent
Ms. Melody A. Hadley, Commission Advocate
Mr. Timothy "Chaz" tevens, Complainant
In re: Patricia Atkins-Grad,
BEFORE TilE
TATE OF FLORIDA
COMMI ION 0 ETIDC
COM:.AISSiON ON tTHICS
DATE RECEIVED
Respondent. Complaint o. 12-295
__________________________ /
ADVOCATE' RECOMMENDATIO
The undersigned Advocate, after reviewing the Complaint and Report of Investigation
filed in this matter, submits this Recommendation in accordance with Rule 34-5.006(3), F.A.C.
RESPONDE T/COMPLAINANT
Respondent, Patricia Atkins-Grad, serves as a member of the Tamarac City Commission.
Complainant is Timothy "Chaz" tevens of Deerfield Beach, Florida.
J URISDICTION
The Executive Director of the Commission on Ethics determined that the Complaint was
legally sufficient and ordered a preliminary investigation for a probable cause determination as
to whether Respondent violated ections 112.3148(4), and 11 2.3 148(8), Florida Statutes. The
Commission on Ethics has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to Section 112.322, Florida
tatutes.
The Report of Investigation was released on May 17, 2013.
ALLEGATION ONE
Respondent is alleged to have violated Section 112.3148( 4), Florida Statutes, by
accepting gifts from a real estate developer.
APPLICABLE LAW
cction 112.3 148( 4 ), Florida tatutes, provides as follows
A reponing individual or procurement employee or any other
person on llis or her behalf is prohibited from knowingly
accepting, directly or indirectly, a gift from a political committee
or committee of continuous existence, as defined in s. 106.0 II , or
from a lobbyist who lobbies the reporting individual's or
procurement employee's agency, or directly or indirectly on behalf
of the partner, firm, employer, or principal of a lobbyist, if he or
she knows or reasonably believes that the gifi has a vaJue in excess
of $1 00; however, such a gift may be accepted by such person on
behalf of a governmental entity or a charitable organization. If the
gift is accepted on behalf of a governmental entity or charitable
organization, the person receiving the gift shaJl not maintain
custody of the gift for any period of time beyond that reasonably
necessary to arrange for the transfer of custody and ownership of
the gift.
In order to establish a violation of ection 112.3148(4), Florida tatutes, the following
elements must be proved:
1. Respondent must have been a reporting individual or
procurement employee.
2. Respondent must have knowingly accepted a gift.
3. The donor of the gift must have been a lobbyist who
lobbies Respondent or his agency.
4. Respondent knew or reasonably believed that the gift had a
vaJue of more than S l 00.
ANALYSI
On March 24, 2006, Respondent accepted $4000 in cash from real estate developer,
hawn Chait. (ROI 4, 5, Exhibit A) On March 2, 2007, Chait paid $2300 to a BMW dealership
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to assist Respondent with the down payment for a BMW 525i. (ROI 6, 7, Exhibit B) The ethics
complaint was received by the Commission on Ethics on December 20, 20 12. (ROI 4,
Complaint I) Both of the aforementioned incidents occurred more than five years prior to the
date that the complaint was filed and is not within the Commission' s five-year statute of
limitations. (ROI 4)
Therefore, based upon the evidence before the Commission, I recommend that the
Commission find no probable cause to believe that Respondent violated eetion 112.3 148(4),
Florida Statutes.
ALLEGATION TWO
Respondent is all eged to have violated eetion 112.3148(8), Florida tatutes, by failing
to disclose gifts valued in excess of$100.
APPLICABLE LAW
ection 112.3148(8), florida Statutes, provides as follows
(8)(a) Each reporting individual or procurement employee shall file
a statement with the Commission on Ethics on the last day of each
calendar quarter, for the previous calendar quarter, containing a list
of gifts which he or she believes to be in excess of $100 in value, if
any, accepted by him or her, for which compensation was not
provided by the donee to the donor within 90 days of receipt of the
gift to reduce the value to $100 or less, except the following:
l. Gifis from relatives.
2. Gifts prohibited by subsection (4) or s. 112.313(4).
3. Gifts otherwise required to be disclosed by this section.
ection 112.312( I. 2)(a), Florida Statutes, provides in its relevant part:
"Gift" for purposes of ethics in government and financial
disclosure required by law, means that which is accepted by a
donee or by another on the donee's behalf, or that which is paid or
given to another for or on behalf of a donee, directly, indirectly, or
in trust for the donee's benefit or by any other means, for which
equal or greater consideration is not given within 90 days ...
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ANALYSIS
The underlying facts and circumstances relating to this allegation are contained above in
Allegation One. See Analysis in Allegation One.
Therefore, based upon the evidence before the Commission, I recommend that the
Commission ftnd no probable cause to believe that Respondent violated ection 112.3148(8),
Florida tatutes.
RECOMMENDATION
It is my recommendation that:
I . There is no probable cause to believe that Respondent violated ection
112.3148(4), Florida tatutes, by accepting gifts from a real estate developer.
2. There is no probable cause to believe that Respondent violated Section
112.3148(8), Florida tatutes, by failing to disclose gifts valued in excess of $100.

RespectfuJiy submitted this day ofMay, 2013.
t1wL .)}JL
d
Advocate for the Florida Commission
on Ethics
Florida Bar No. 0636045
Office of the Attorney General
The Capitol, PL-0 I
Tallahassee, Florida 323 99-1050
(850) 414-3300, Ext. 4704
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REPORT
OF
INVESTIGATION
Complaint Number 12-295
NOTICE CONCERNING CONFIDENTIALITY
Thi s report of investigation concerns an alleged violation of Chapter 112, Part Ill, Florida
Statutes, or other breach of public trust under provisi ons of Article 11, Section 8, Florida
Constitution. The Report and any exhibits may be confidential (exempt from the public
records law) pursuant to Section 112.324, Florida Statutes, and Chapter 34·5, F.A.C. , the
rules of the Commission on Ethics. Unless the Respondent has waived the confidentiality in
writing, this report will remain confidential until one of the following occurs: (1) the
complaint is dismissed by the Commission; (2) the Commission finds sufficient evidence to
order a public hearing; or (3) the Commission orders a public report as a final disposition of
t he matter.
STATE OF FLORIDA
COMMISSION ON ETHICS
Post Office Drawer 1 5 709
Tallahassee, Florida 32317-5709
REPORT OF INVESTIGATION
TITLE:
COMPLAINT NO.:
INVESTIGATED BY:
Distribution:
Releasing Authority:
PATRICIA ATKINS-GRAD
City Commissioner
Tamarac, Florida
12- 295
Exhibits A and B
~ c
;>
K. Travis Wade
Commission on Ethics
Respondent
Advocate
File
Executive Director
Date
* * * *
,;
REPORT OF TNVESTIGA TION
COMPLAINT NO. 12-295
(1) The complaint in this matter was fi led by Timothy "Chaz" Stevens of Deerfield
Beach, who alleges that Patricia Atkins-Grad, while serving as Tamarac City Commissioner,
violated the Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees.
(2) The Complainant alleges that the Respondent received gifts worth greater than $100
and failed to disclose them on a quarterly gift disclosure form-CE Form 9. The
Compl ainant included a newspaper article with the complaint, which states that the
Respondent was acquitted on criminal charges of bribery, official misconduct, and receiving
unlawful compensation, where she allegedly received benefits worth more than $6,300 from
real estate developers Bruce and hawn Chait- who paid for an election party for the
Respondent and ass isted her with leasi ng a BMW.
(3) The Executi ve Di rector of the Commi ssion on Ethics noted that based upon the
information provided in the complaint, the above-referenced al legations were sufficient to
warrant a prelimjnary investigation to determine whether the Respondent's actions violated
Section 112.3148( 4), Florida Statutes (Prohibited Receipt of Gifts) and Section 112.3 148(8),
Florida tatutes (Gift Reporting).
(4) Assistant tate Attorney Deborah Zimet confirmed that the Respondent was acquitted
of the above-referenced charges on December II , 2012. Ms. Zimet advised that Bruce Chait
and hi s son, Shawn Chait, donated approximately $4,000 to the Respondent on March 24,
2006 to pay for her election victo.ry party, which was held on March 28, 2006. The complaint
was received by the Commi ssion on Ethics on December 20, 20 12. The donation was made
more than five years prior to the date the complajnt was fil ed and is not within the
Commission on Ethics' five-year statute of limitations.
(5) The Respondent's arrest affidavit confirms that Shawn Chait gave $4,000 cash towards
her victory party. A copy of the pertinent portjon of the arrest affidavit is appended as Exhibit
A.
(6) Ms. Zimet ad vi ed that Sha"vn Chait paid $2,300 of the $3, I 00 lease down payment to
the West Palm Beach BMW dealership in March 2007 for a BMW 525i leased by the
Respondent. This payment also was made more than five years prior to the fi ling of this
complaint and is not withjn the Commission's fi ve-year statute of limitations.
(7) The Respondent's arrest affidavit confirms that Shawn Chait met with Braman BMW
alesman Darran Lazar on March 2, 2007, and paid $2,300 for the remainder of the
Respondent's do"vn payment for the automobile's lease. A copy of the pertinent portion of the
arrest affidavit is appended as Exhibit B.
END OF REPORT OF PRELIMINARY INVE TIGATION
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EXHIBIT A
EXHIBIT A
In Late February and early March 2006, Beverly Stracber, a paid consultant for
Flansbaum-Talabisco's campaign, suggested to Flansbaum-Talabisco that she refund her
campaign contributions from P r e ~ t i g e Homes. Flansbaum-Talabisco suggested to Atkins-Grad
that she also refund ber campaign contributions from Prestige Homes in ordered to hide the
support Prestige Homes was giving to the candidates and cloak the reLationship between the
candidates and Prestige Homes.
On March 3, 2006, Flansbaum-TaLabisco refunded Bruce Chait his $500 contribution to
her campaign and refunded Prestige Homes of Tamarac its $500 contribution to her campaign.
On March 8, 2006, FLansbaum-Talabisco refunded Kim Loss her $500 contribution to her
campaign. Flansbaum-Talabisco did not refund Prestige Construction Services, me. its $500
contribution.
On March 7, 2006, Atkins-Grad refunded Prestige Homes its $250 contribution. to her
campaign and refunded Bruce Chait his $500 contribution to her campaign. Atkins-Grad did not
refund Kim Loss her $500 contribution. Atkins-Grad reported these refunds on March 10, 2005
on her Campaign Treasurer's Report for the period February 18, 2006 to March 9, 2006.
C o unts I- III, Vlli
Conspiracy, Unlawful Compensation, Bribery, and Official Misconduct with
respect to the payment for the "Victory Party'' and March 22, 2006
Commission Vote on Prestige Homes.
On March 13, 2006, Atkins-Grad was elected City Commissioner for District 2 for the
City of Tamarac, F1orida. After her election, Atkins-Grad met with Shawn Chait and he gave
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Atkins-Grad $4,000.00 cash towards a "Victory Party" at Diamantes Banquet Center on March
28,2006.
Based upon sworn testimony there was an implied agreement betweeu Shawn Chait and
Patricia Atkins-Grad that the money Shawn Chait gave Patricia Atkins-Grad was in exchange for
voting to approve projects for Prestige Homes of Tamarac, Inc.
On March 22, 2006, Atkins-Grad voted in favor of Prestige Homes' agenda items
T021 12 and T02 L l 3 on the city commission agenda. She never notified anyone that she had
received money from the Chajts to vote on Prestige Homes' project and sb.e never filed a conflict
of interest form (form 8B) declaring that she bad a voting conflict of interest and bad benefited
monetarily from the Chaits. On the same day as the vote, Patricia Atkins-Grad made a $500.00
cash deposit to Monica Avila, Diamante's representative for the "Victory Party." Atkins-Grad let
Ms. Avila know that she was a commissioner and requested that Ms. Avila give her a discount
for the " Victory Party" and arrange the bill so that she would not have to pay taxes. Ms. Avila
declined and directed her to the owner. On March 24, 2006, Atkins-Grad paid the $3874.00 cash
balance to Monica Avila.
Counts IV-VII, VIII
Conspiracy, Unlawful Compensation, Bribery, and Official Misconduct with
respect to the payment for the lease of a 2007 525i BMW and the January 10,2007
and ApriJ 11, 2007 Commission Votes on Prestige Homes.
In December 2006, Commissioner Patricia Atkins-Orad expressed an interest to Shavm
Chait in leasing a BMW 325 but said she couJd not afford one. Shawn Chait informed Atkins-
Grad that be would assist her in the payment of a lease on a 2007 BMW S25i at Braman BMW
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EXHIBITB
EXHIBITB
Atkins-Grad $4,000.00 cash towards a "Victory Party" at Diamantcs Banquet Center on March
28,2006.
Based upon sworn testimony there was an implied agreement betweeu Shawn Chait and
Patricia Atkins-Grad that the money Shawn Chait gave Patricia Atkins-Grad was in exchange for
voting to approve projects for Prestige Homes of Tamarac, Inc.
On March 22, 2006, Atkins-Grad voted in favor of Prestige Homes' agenda items
T02112 and T02 L t3 on the city commission agenda. She never notified anyone that she had
received money from the Chaits to vote on Prestige Homes' project and she never ftled a conflict
of interest form (Form 8B) declaring that she had a voting conflict of interest and had benefited
monetarily from the Chaits. On the same day as the vote, Patricia Atkins-Grad made a $500.00
cash deposit to Monica Avila, Diamante's representative for the "Victory Party." Atkins-Grad let
Ms. Avila know that she was a commissioner and requested that Ms. Avila give her a discount
for the "Victory Party" and arrange the bill so that she would not have to pay taxes. Ms. Avila
declined and directed her to the owner. On March 24, 2006, Atkins-Grad paid the $3874.00 cash
balance to Monica Avila.
Counts IV-VII, VIII
Conspiracy, Unlawful Compensation, Bribery, and Official Misconduct with
respect to the payment for the lease of a 2007 525i BMW and the January 10,2007
and April 1 l, 2007 Commission Votes on Prestige Homes.
In December 2006, Commissioner Patricia Atkins-Orad expressed an interest to Shawn
Chait in leasing a BMW 325 but said she could not afford one. Shawn Chait informed Atkins-
Grad that be would assist her in the payment of a lease on a 2007 BMW S2Si at Braman BMW
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Motor Cars and arranged for her to meet with Braman BMW Salesman Darran Lazar on
December 29, 2006. On December 29, 2006 Atkins-Grad met with Salesman Darran Lazar and
ordered a 2007 BMW 525i with the understanding she would only pay "First and Tag."
On February 27, 2007 Atkins-Grad returned to Braman BMW and met with Salesman
Lazar to take delivery of the 2007 BMW 525i. She signed a BMW Financial Services Lease
Agreement with a total amount due of $3, 152.11 at that time. Of that amount, Atkins Grad paid
$781.00, representi ng the fust payment and the tag costs. Shavm Chait had agreed to pay the
remainder of the amount due.
A few days later Shawn Chait met Salesman Lazar in a parking lot and i ave him
$2300.00 cash for the remainder of the payment of Patricia Atkins-Grad's BMW 525i. The
payment was ''Receipted" at Braman BMW on March 2. 2001. During this rime period there are
records showing many cell phone calls between Shawn Chait and Patricia Atkins Grad, and
Shawn Chait and Salesman Lazar.
On January 10, 2007, Atkins-Grad voted in favor of Prestige Homes' agenda items
T02112 and T021 13 on the city commission agenda. On April 11, 2007, Atkins-Grad voted in
favor of Prestige Homes' agenda items T0 2136 and T02137 on the city commission agenda. At
no time did she ever notify anyone that she had recejved money from the Cbaits to vote on
Prestige Homes' projects. At no ti me did she ever file a voting conflict of interest form (Form
8B) declaring that she had a conflict of interest and bad benefited monetarily from the Chai ts' for
her vote.
Based upon the foregoing information, your affiant has probable cause to believe that
Patricia Atkins-Grad committed the offenses of Unlawful Compensation, Bribery and Official
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BEFORE THE
TATE OF FLORIDA
COMMI IO 0 ETHI
In re P TRI l A A TKI -GRAD,
D / ~ 1 ~ E , ~ , L E D
FEB 2 1 2013
COMMISS!ON ON ETHiCS
CONFIDE TIAL )
)
)
Complaint o. 12-295
Respondent.
_________________________)
DETERM I ATIO OF INVE TI GATL VE J RI DI TlO
1
D ORDER TO I VE Tl G TE
UPO REV II:. \V of this complaint, I lind as follows:
I. This complaint was filed by Timothy "Chaz" tevens of Deerfield Beach.
2. fhe Respondent, Patricia Atkins-Grad, allegedly serves as a member of the
Tamarac Cit) Commission.
3. The Complainant alleges that the Respondent rccei ved gifts worth greater than
$100 and failed to disclose them on a quarterly gift disclosure form-Cl:. Form 9. A newspaper
article attached to the complaint states that the Respondent \\as acquitted on criminal charges of
bribery, official misconduct, and receiving unlawful compensation, where she allegedly received
benefits \\Orth more than 6,300 from real estate developers Bruce and ha\\ n Chait- \\ ho paid
for an election victor) part) for Respondent and assisted her \\ith leasing a BMW.
4. The complaint indicates possible violations of ections 112.3148(4) and
112.3148(8), Florida tatutes.
WII EREFORE staff of the Commission on I: thics shaJI conduct a preliminary
investigation of this complaint for a probable cause determination of whether the Respondent has
violated cctions 112.3148( 4) and 112.3148(8), Florida tatutes, as set forth abo\'e.
Date
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VIRLINOIA 0 0
Executive l)ircctor
VAD:jcc
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