Florida governor to name ally as chief financial officer

Angie Massey
June 26, 2017

Rick Scott is turning to a long-time political ally and former north Florida legislator to take over one of the top elected jobs in state government.

Gov. Rick Scott made it official Monday, formally announcing former state Rep. Jimmy Patronis will serve as the state's next Chief Financial Officer.

Patronis helped his family operate a successful restaurant in Panama City for years before making a bid for the Florida House of Representatives in 2006.

He served in the state legislature for eight years before being appointed by Scott to the FPSC in 2014.

Atwater announced in February he was stepping down early to become a vice president at Florida Atlantic University managing finances and economic development.

Patronis was appointed by Scott to finish former CFO Jeff Atwater's term which run through next year.

Patronis backed Scott during his run for governor in 2010 when many in the GOP establishment were supporting another candidate. "I know that he will bring his wealth of private sector experience with him to Tallahassee".

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"I am honored to appoint Jimmy Patronis as Florida's Chief Financial Officer", said Scott.

Patronis in a statement said he was "honored" by the appointment.

Patronis has been a loyal supporter of the governor. The other Cabinet posts are attorney general and agriculture commissioner. "I think today is going to continue the Jimmy Patronis legacy of if you ... stand up for the right things, if you work your tail off, every opportunity is afforded to you". Scott will also visit Tampa and Pensacola to publicize the high-profile appointment.

The CFO is one of three cabinet level positions.

Patronis will serve out the remainder of Atwater's term, and could have an advantage over other Republicans if he chooses to run for a full term in 2018.

Patronis will be officially sworn into the job Friday.

Florida's chief financial officer is elected statewide and is a member of the state Cabinet that oversees several key agencies. Jeremy Ring, a former state legislator and executive at Yahoo, is the only Democrat to file as of this posting.

Other reports by GizPress

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