SVAA Director Nicole Carni: 'I'm on paid administrative leave and I'm cooperating fully'

Segment 7 / BREAKING NEWS reported first by

Nicole CarniSoutheast Volusia Advertising Authority Director Nicole Carni called Sunday morning and said she's given Volusia County officials all documentation requested by the auditors Friday and Saturday. The County Council on Thursday gave County Manager Jim Dinneen the green light on Thursday to seize the SVAA's books after its auditor found a number of red flags that necessitated him having authorization to proceed that day.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- Nicole Carni reached out to this morning and said she knows she's up against the ropes in keeping her job, but she stopped short of saying if she'll fight or walk away.

"I'm on paid administrative leave and I'm cooperating fully," she said in a 6 a.m. interview. "All documentation requested by the auditors and the county have been submitted."

Carni said she was told by SVAA Chairman David Kosmas on Thursday that she was being placed on administrative leave, and though she initially told the following day she didn't know if it was with pay, she explained they spoke again later in the day and that he clarified for her that it was paid and her leave indefinite while the county continues its investigation into the agency's finances.

Carni is paid $2,759 every two weeks and that will continue unless or until she either resigns or fights to keep her job with the paperwork she has since submitted. She declined to elaborate on what the county needed clarification on.

Carni said Kosmas told her that the county was willing to entertain an "exit strategy" for her, but she would have to submit it to her own board, if she goes that route. 

"I can't say right now what I am going to do," Carni said. The next SVAA board meeting is Jan. 17 and that is the first opportunity where a resignation could be tendered.

Previous coverage for "Show Me the Money: New Smyrna Beach"

Segment 1: New Smyrna Beach taxpayer money benefiting Mayor Adam Barringer's new restaurant/bar in Maitland
Blog: "Show Me the Money" drawing big audience
Blog: Deceptions and realities not so difficult to see
Segment 2: New Smyrna Beach Mayor Adam Barringer opens his restaurant in Maitland ahead of schedule
Blog: Need to help poor in New Smyrna Beach far more real than glitz of artificial Christmas tree on Canal Street

Segment 3: New Year's party on Flagler Avenue in New Smyrna Beach draws 2,000; fireworks less than 6 minutes
Blog: Drinking your tax dollars away in NSB while jobs lost
Segment 4: NSB police spokesman on New Year's eve public drinking: 'If they see a violation they take action'
Segment 5: County seizes control of SEV Ad Authority finances; CRA concerns to be aired in New Smyrna Beach
Segment 6: SVAA Director Nicole Carni suspended from post in New Smyrna Beach

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