More details emerge on county Christmas party (DOCUMENTS)

Published: Monday, November 5, 2012 at 10:36 AM.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office, the state Auditor General's Office and the state attorney's office are investigating the Christmas party, which officials said cost about $40,000.

It is believed that Bellinger likely used bed tax money or BP grant money to pay for the lavish event, which featured a live band, large dinner buffet, cash bar and Wii games.

County officials have said Bellinger misled them by claiming various businesses had donated the food and other perks at the party.

But county documents obtained by the Northwest Florida Daily News show that Aramark, which holds the catering contract at the convention center, billed the center for the buffet.

The gourmet spread cost $16,272 and included a cascading salad bar, Guatemalan pickled vegetable salad, a roast beef carving station, smoked chicken breast and wild boar sausage, herb-crusted fish, scalloped potatoes with smoked gouda and fennel, New York cheesecake with pomegranate strawberry sauce, pumpkin fool and assorted holiday cookies.

An additional $2,442 was spent on to-go orders for 77 county workers with the EMS, corrections, water and sewer, dispatch and facility maintenance departments, according to Aramark's invoice.

The documents show that Bellinger wrote off the cost of the ballroom and furniture rental for the party.



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