Documents signed by Lt. Gov-elect Jennifer Carroll show her consulting firm leasing office space in Jacksonville that another tenant said was leased to him at the same time.
Both state and county records show the tenant was there, and Carroll was not.
Carroll's firm, JC & 3N, was accepted for a program that sets city contracts aside for eligible small businesses from January 2007 until May. That program required that Carroll, a Clay County resident, have a company based in Duval County for three years.
The Times-Union reported last month that altered documents were in the files of Carroll's company when the city reviewed its eligibility, and since then more evidence has emerged that fudged paperwork helped the company secure a spot in the program.
A lease submitted to the city as proof Carroll's firm rented office space in Jacksonville shows that it was using space at 8553-1 Argyle Business Loop from "3/14/2002 to 3/13/2007."
That was news to David Hodges, the tenant who state records show leased that space from 2003 until early 2005. Hodges, who owns Fine Tooth Comb Investigations, said Carroll's company was "definitely not there while I was there."
In addition, Rivers Constructors, the company with which Carroll said she subleased, did not move to Duval County until March 2005, according to county tax records. It moved into the 8553-1 Argyle Business Loop office shortly after Hodges' company left.
Rivers Constructors is in the Jacksonville Small and Emerging Business program and has received $836,123 in city contracts through its involvement. Carroll's company never sought contracts.
Carroll did not return several calls and e-mails seeking comment, but in an Oct. 29 e-mail said she had been renting space at the Argyle Business Loop location long before she applied for the program.
"Since the office space was already being rented by me the lease was just drawn up as a matter of formality (regardless of how the dates are listed on the paper)," Carroll wrote in the e-mail.
In a separate e-mail sent the same day, she said that on the advice of Ivy Johnson, who was the former head of the Jacksonville Small and Emerging Business program, the lease was created in 2006 when she was applying for the program.
"Ivy Johnson stated that it would be OK to have a lease that showed the entire rental term be drawn up which covers the period of time I was renting and will continue to rent," Carroll wrote of the lease that reflected a nearly five-year period from 2002 to 2007.
In May, Johnson was fired from the city amid accusations that she forged documents on behalf of companies trying to get business with the city. The FBI is now investigating a handful of contracts related to the incident.
When the city workers reviewed Carroll's application, they were told by owners of the Argyle Business Loop office park where Carroll's office was located that "no one goes to the office, nor is there furniture inside," according to documents filed with the city.
Because of concerns surrounding the office, Johnson recommended that Carroll withdraw her application, which she did on Aug. 16, 2006, documents indicate. Roughly a month later, Carroll reapplied - and 20 days later Johnson approved her for the program.
The only defense I'm hearing (from Scott/Carroll supporters) is "Well, she never actually received a contract so this isn't illegal." Eh.