Okaloosa reviews Bellinger-Bos marketing agreement (DOCUMENT)

nwfdn peter bos mark bellinger scandal okaloosa county
FILE PHOTO / Northwest Florida Daily News
Published: Monday, April 1, 2013 at 10:07 AM.

Okaloosa County commissioners have directed special counsel Greg Stewart to review a $228,000 marketing agreement that former tourism head Mark Bellinger made with Legendary CEO Peter Bos in July 2011.

The scrutiny is part of the board’s ongoing effort to recoup the financial losses resulting from Bellinger’s thefts and unauthorized spending during his two-year tenure from May 2010 to May 2012.

The five-year marketing agreement was discovered in the weeks following Bellinger’s suicide from a drug overdose in early May 2012.

County officials discovered that Bellinger had used bed tax money to pay Bos the first installment of $42,000. In return, Bellinger got a 2,256-square-foot building to use as a welcome center at HarborWalk Village in Destin.

Bellinger persuaded commissioners to approve the lease by telling them the rent would be only $1 a year for five years. He never disclosed the five-year marketing agreement.

Now commissioners want to know how that money was spent, but have stopped short of asking Bos to return the $42,000.

“I would like to … see how the dollars were spent and whether it included provisions for marketing for the Emerald Coast or was it just marketing for Peter Bos’ businesses,” Commissioner Dave Parisot said. “That’s part of our internal investigation. … We need to get the facts before we start making decisions.”

1 2 3 4 5

Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.

▲ Return to Top

Local Faves