City Council President wants legal opinion about Sheriff’s residency

Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams file photo.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – City Council President Sam Newby wants a legal opinion from the General Council by 5 p.m. Wednesday. It’s unclear if the General Counsel will have it completed by then but that’s what Newby requested in a letter he sent.

News4JAX on Friday spoke with Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams, following a recent report in The Tributary that he’s moved out of Duval County.

Williams confirmed to News4Jax reporter Jim Piggott that he moved, but believes he does not have to resign and is still within the law.

Records show Williams and his wife sold their Jacksonville home a year ago and listed a new address in Nassau County.

According to the city’s charter: “If the sheriff should die, resign, or remove his residence from Duval County during his term of office, or be removed from office, the office of sheriff shall become vacant.”

However, Williams points to state law, which does not require a sheriff to live in a county where they serve, and Williams said the state law would overrule the city charter in this case.

We’ve reached out to Supervisor of Elections Mike Hogan as well. He told News4Jax that he is researching the issue.

We will be following up with city lawyers next week, after the Memorial Day holiday.

About the Authors:

Jim Piggott is the reporter to count on when it comes to city government and how it will affect the community.