Gov. Scott: Sen. Latvala's resignation would be 'best thing for the state'

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Gov. Rick Scott called for the registration of Sen. Jack Latvala less than 24 hours after the release of a report supporting sexual harassment allegations against the Clearwater Republican

“Now that the special master report is complete and probable cause has been found, it is time for Senator Latvala to resign," Scott said in a statement. "Resigning is the best thing he can do now for his constituents, colleagues and the state.”

A Senate investigation by retired State Appeals Court Judge Ronald V. Swanson determined "probable cause" to further investigate the accusations by six women, including physical contact or sexual intimacy "in exchange for support of legislative initiatives."

Recommendations from the report include:

  • Forwarding the investigation to criminal prosecutors
  • An investigation into possible corruption
  • Sexual harassment training for all senators and Senate staff
  • A review of Senate culture

The Senate can accept the report's recommendations or derive their own conclusions following a formal hearing into the claims.

Latvala, 66, who is also running for governor, stepped down as the Senate's budget chair until the "matter is resolved," according to a letter he wrote to the Senate president.

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