Gov. Rick Scott gave a glimpse of his personal wealth Monday, disclosing a net worth of $132.7 million as of the end of last year, in addition to releasing 188 pages of tax returns from 2010 through 2012. (See the full returns below.)
Meanwhile, the three members of the state Cabinet, each qualifying for re-election Monday, collectively reported a net worth of $10.95 million.
The documents released by Scott, whose net worth grew from $83.8 million a year earlier, came as the governor filed paperwork to qualify for re-election.
Scott, the former CEO of the Columbia/HCA heath-care company, also challenged the Democratic front-runner, former Gov. Charlie Crist, to make a similar disclosure of tax returns from prior years.
Crist’s campaign issued a statement that the former governor intends to exceed Scott’s challenge.
Crist released his financial documents for the past year as he also qualified on Monday.
Crist, who in April told the Forum Club of the Palm Beaches that, “I have lived paycheck to paycheck my entire life,” estimated in his disclosure a net worth at $1.25 million, with his income last year at $712,780.
Crist revised his Forum Club statement on Monday to indicate he wasn’t referring to recent years.
The three members of the state Cabinet — Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, Attorney General Pam Bondi and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam — reported that their collective net worth increased nearly $1.2 million during 2013.
Among the details in Scott’s financial disclosure, his Naples home and boathouse are worth $13.2 million, he owns 60 acres in Montana worth $1.4 million, and $43 million of his investments are tied to family investment firm RLSI-CSP Capital Partners in Naples.
Scott, who reportedly spent about $73 million of his own money to run in 2010, listed a net worth of $218.6 million when he first ran for office.
Also as part of the disclosure, Scott ended a blind trust he formed in 2011 and publicly listed his investments.
After the disclosure documents were filed, Scott placed his investments into a new blind trust, then challenged Crist to also show finances from the years that Crist’s been out of office. Crist was elected governor in 2006 as a Republican and left office in early 2011.
“I think it’s incumbent for a governor to have their assets in a blind trust,” Scott said in a telephone interview. “By not knowing what assets, and having an outside professional run those assets, you don’t have either the appearance or the conflict of interest by knowing what is in the blind trust.”
A hearing has been scheduled later this week on a lawsuit filed by Jim Apthorp, former chief of staff to the late Democratic Gov. Reubin Askew, that challenges a 2013 law allowing elected officials to put their financial assets in blind trusts.
Apthorp has argued that blind trusts violate the “full and public disclosure” requirements of the Sunshine Amendment and are therefore unconstitutional.
Blind trusts do not offer detailed public disclosure of holdings, but supporters of the 2013 law say they avoid potential conflicts of interest between officials’ public duties and their financial interests.
Scott is the only elected official using a blind trust.
Scott said the release of information about his investments wasn’t linked to the lawsuit.
While promising to release more documents than Scott, Crist’s qualifying paperwork included his 2013 financial disclosure form.
Among his income, Crist listed $296,722 in pay from the Morgan & Morgan law firm, $182,933 from consulting for The St. Joe Company, $50,000 from consulting for Coastal Construction Group and $125,000 from media.
Crist’s book, “The Party’s Over: How the Extreme Right Hijacked the GOP and I Became a Democrat,” was released in February.
Crist also took in $45,588 through a state pension.
Most of his assets are tied to stocks, bonds and bank accounts, totaling about $1.2 million.
In his final year in the Governor’s Mansion, while running without party affiliation for U.S. Senate, Crist’s net worth was reported at $466,063, with assets between $2.05 million and $4.35 million in the name of his wife Carole.
Meanwhile, Putnam, whose wealth is tied to the family owned Putnam Groves, continues to be the financial pacesetter among the Cabinet.
His net worth stands at $7.85 million as of Dec. 31, up to from $7.2 million the previous year. The former U.S. congressman was worth $6.8 million in 2010 when elected commissioner.
Putnam earned $128,745 in the state job last year, up from $123,912.
Putnam’s 20 percent share of Putnam Groves accounted for $2.96 million, while the majority of his assets are tied in a wide range of investments in Vanguard funds.
His Bartow home was valued at $174,000, while a residence in Tallahassee was appraised at $260,000, both the same as a year earlier. He also owns portions of homes in Little Gasparilla Island, Lake Wales and Babson Park.
Atwater, with a net worth of $1.86 million, has most of his worth tied to stocks, which account for $1.12 million. His investments grew from $1.076 a year earlier.
A banker and former Senate president, Atwater’s worth has grown from $1.6 million when he ran for statewide office in 2010.
His North Palm Beach home has increased in value from $295,000 to $314,140. He lists his state salary at $128,161.
Bondi’s worth has jumped from $472,696 in 2010, while a candidate for state office, to $1.24 million.
Unlike in 2010 when she listed no income, she reported earning $128,746 in the state position last year.
Bondi listed her personal residence at $720,000.
She also reported owing the Suncoast Schools Federal Credit Union just over $290,000, down from $301,000 a year earlier.
–Jim Turner, News Service of Florida
Wealth has always equaled power, especially in America. Now, we can add that it also buys “free speech.” Only the intelligence of the voters can equalize the equation.
It is wonderful to hear Scott is a successful business man so that he know better to govern the state on that solid basis.
The liberal elected obama which has zero business knowledge and no experience which is why the U.S. economy is tanking and debt is own of control.
@Anonymous says–George W. Bush was a wealthy businessman but, under his Presidency, the economy tanked and the debt grew tremendously because of two unsubstantiated wars .”Inexperienced” Obama helped steer our economy back from the edge of the cliff…Strange how selective the memory of Conservative Republicans can be. But, then again, that suits their love affair with their own preconceived notions of reality as handed down by the likes of Rush Limbaugh and FOX news.
…By the way, Anonymous, are you, by any chance, a proud Ronald Reagan Republican? Because our debt TRIPLED under his administration.
Max Awesomeness says
Gee, I thought that the US economy tanked because of mortgage backed securities and credit default swaps, both of which were integral to banking and other financial institutions. Imagine my surprise to discover that the truth was that one man, Barack HUSSEIN Obama, flicked some hidden switch in the white house that was linked to stock prices on wall street. Man, you learn something new ever day.
And on that note, it’s interesting to note that people with lots of wealth are more often than not sociopaths:
Which really isn’t that surprising, considering the number of things that Rick Scott has done as governor that directly and negatively impact the residents of the state of florida. But by all means, hold on to that belief that Scott is a good businessman and governor, regardless of the fact that he sent the Labrador that he rescued during his campaign to show that he had some semblance of humanity back to the pound the minute he got into office:
Sherry Epley says
Unfortunately money buys political ads which influences opinions and therefore votes. . . so indirectly elections can be(and often are) BOUGHT. We need political campaign reform to truly empower voters. The trouble is. . . the politicians whose elections were bought for them are the ones who hold the keys to political campaign reform. And, the corruption comes full circle . . .”Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely”!
Those who think the economy is in the tank should note that the stock market has been hitting record highs. . . and the rich get richer. . . BUT so do those 401K plans!
SWome people simply like to show how stupid they are; two unfunded wars, Rx Plan not paid for, loosing 750,000 per month, collapse of the entire economy, all brought to you by Bush and his Republican / Tea Baggers Clowns with the sole intent of destroying the country so only the 1% survive.
“Also as part of the disclosure, Scott ended a blind trust he formed in 2011 and publicly listed his investments.” Did anybody list these investments in between Trusts when they were public knowledge and if so where can we view them? Blind trusts are a joke. Do you really think that the manager he picked to run his trust and our felonious Governor really do not discuss what may be a hot investment he is steering state dollars to?
And does anybody know if Jeff Atwater is any relation to Lee Atwater? Our esteemed Attorney General Pam Bondi has sure seen a nice uptick in her net worth, more than doubling her wealth from under a half million to one and a quarter million in just a year. Not bad on a salary of $128k and no other listed income.
But we should be so thankful that these fine public servants sacrifice so much to serve us, the public. Thank them all this November.
Scott excellent business man as per his record in Columbia HC…at least were was caught…and let go with a slap in the wrist .The largest penalty ever paid by a Medicare provider in this case Columbia HC for pillaging Medicare 1.7 billion.
SO WHAT.. The Clintons who claim they’re broke have millions and millions stashed in off shore banks..
@m&m says–Translation: SO WHAT? I’m a proud Tea Party patriot (sometime wearer of a Ronald Reagan mask) and entitled to my prejudices, which I back up with false information and, whenever I’m corrected, justify by pointing my finger at the other guy, making dramatic and sweeping accusations that I have no proof of. Perhaps you are confusing the Clintons with Michele Bachmann and her husband who hide their assets behind his Swiss citizenship. After her aborted run for the Republican nomination, she even toyed with idea of changing HER citizenship status, to make the process even easier.