CEO 82-16 -- March 4, 1982
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
STATE SENATOR LEASING PROPERTY TO STATE UNIVERSITY
To: The Honorable George Kirkpatrick, State Senator, District 6
No prohibited conflict of interest would exist were a State Senator to lease property to the University of Florida for use as laboratory space. Previous opinions 77-13 and 80-61 are referenced as precedents.
Would a prohibited conflict of interest exist were you, a state senator, to lease property to the University of Florida for use as laboratory space?
Your question is answered in the negative.
In your letter of inquiry you advise that you are a member of the Florida Senate and that recently you have reached an agreement with the University of Florida to lease laboratory space for use by the space astronomy laboratory for research purposes. A copy of the lease indicates that it will be entered into by the State Board of Regents for and on behalf of the university.
In a previous advisory opinion, CEO 77-13, we advised that the Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees would not prohibit a member of the House of Representatives from leasing business property to the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services. Based upon that opinion, we rendered a subsequent opinion, CEO 80-61, in which we advised that the Code of Ethics would not prohibit a State Senator from leasing property to the Department of Professional Regulation.
Accordingly, under the rationale of these previous opinions, we find that no prohibited conflict of interest would be created were you to lease property to the Board of Regents for the University of Florida while serving as a member of the Florida Senate.