NAPLES — The Greater Naples Better Government Committee has endorsed six candidates for office in Collier County. They are:
■ District 1 County Commissioner Donna Fiala
■ District 5 County Commissioner Jim Coletta
■ Clerk of the Courts Dwight Brock
■ Property Appraiser Abe Skinner
■ Tax Collector Larry Ray
■ Sheriff Kevin Rambosk
No endorsement was made in the District 3 County Commission race.
Interviews were conducted on June 18 and June 20 of 14 candidates whose names are on the Aug. 14 primary ballot.
In a prepared statement, the committee said its board concluded that both Commission District 3 incumbent Tom Henning and Republican challenger Bill McDaniel are viable candidates but neither obtained the required number of votes for an endorsement.
The committee's board said it determined that the candidates it endorsed have the experience and personal qualities best suited to dealing with issues confronting Collier County in the next four years.
The nonpartisan political committee formed in 1991 in Collier County.
Former lawmaker sentenced to federal prison
A federal judge Friday sentenced former South Florida state Sen. Mandy Dawson to six months in prison and two years of supervised release after she pleaded guilty in April to tax-evasion charges, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami.
Dawson, 55, served from 1998 to 2008 in the Senate, following six years in the House. Dawson was part of a federal investigation into influence buying in Tallahassee, with convicted ophthalmologist and lobbyist Alan Mendelsohn saying in court that he funneled money to Dawson in exchange for her not blocking legislation.
The U.S. Attorney's Office said in a news release that Dawson, a Democrat who represented parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties, failed to file tax returns over a series of years and evaded at least $29,000 in taxes.
Two companies considered to run Florida prisons
Barring a successful legal challenge, two firms — Corizon and Wexford Health Sources — likely will be looking to add employees in Florida during the coming months.
The only catch: The Department of Corrections will be shedding many of those same employees.
The department has decided to move forward with a controversial plan to privatize prison health services across the state, with Corizon and Wexford getting the contracts. The decision came after Leon Circuit Judge Kevin Carroll declined to rule in a challenge to privatization. It was filed by the Florida Nurses Association and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.
State lawyers have long contended the corrections agency has the legal authority to do such a privatization.
In announcing Tuesday that the agency would move forward, Secretary Ken Tucker said the move would save money and was "best for the taxpayers."