Florida CIO under investigation for grand theft

Florida CIO under investigation for grand theft

By Jason Miller

GCN Staff

JULY 25— Florida chief information officer Roy Cales was put on administrative leave with pay July 18 after the Leon County, Fla., sheriff's office confirmed he was under investigation for grand theft in connection with an incident that happened before he was the state's CIO.

Cales, who could not be reached for comment, is being questioned about allegedly forging a letter he used to obtain a loan in 1996, when he ran his own software company, Integrity Data Inc. of Tallahassee, Fla.

The sheriff's office is investigating a claim that Cales signed the name of the business manager for TV station WLTH-TV Fox 49 on a letter promising business for Cales' company. He then allegedly took the letter to a Tallahassee branch of Farmers and Merchants Bank of Monticello, Fla., and used it to secure a $35,000 loan. Cales eventually defaulted on the loan and filed for bankruptcy protection.

Lt. Gov. Frank Brogan placed Cales on administrative leave with pay from his $95,000 a year position after the allegations surfaced. Brogan named Kim Baharami, Cales' chief of staff, as acting CIO for the State Technology Office.

The investigation has been going on since January. Linda Bulter, Leon County Sheriff's spokeswoman, said one reason the investigation has taken more than six months is because it entails combing through years of records.

Cales has been state CIO since last year, when Gov. Jeb Bush created the State Technology Office.

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