FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FLORIDA APPEALS COURT ORDERS DISMISSAL OF LAWSUIT AGAINST CITY OF MIAMI COMMISSIONER CAROLLO: Declares Public Official Is Immune for Official Actions Taken in the Public Interest
Today (February 10, 2021), the Florida Third District Court of Appeal announced that elected officials are immune from a private party’s for official actions taken in the public interest. Validating the official actions taken by City of Miami Commissioner Joe Carollo, District Judge Edward Scales wrote that “Carollo is entitled to overlapping absolute legislative immunity and qualified immunity” for “conduct undertaken by Carollo during a City Commission meeting in Carollo’s capacity as a City Commissioner.”
This decision, Commissioner Carollo announced, “is of crucial importance to the City of Miami because it means Commissioners can do the public’s work without interference from private interests seeking to benefit from disrupting the official process. The issue of Legislative Immunity, explained Commissioner Carollo’s lead lawyers Ben Kuehne and Michael T. Davis, “allows elected officials to focus on the best interests of the community, and not be concerned whether a private interest will sue the official because the action is not to their liking.”
This case involved a lawsuit by the developers of the Miami Wheel, now largely unused at Bayside, complaining about Commissioner Carollo’s stated interest in maximizing the public’s financial benefit in negotiations with Bayside for the development of public lands. This important appellate case confirms that “elected officials can dedicate their actions to the public, and that private interests will not be able to second-guess official actions,” according to lawyer Ben Kuehne.
For more information, contact: Benedict P. Kuehne 786.543.8352 or [email protected]