A former Broward County School Board employee was sentenced to 20 months in prison for accepting bribes from a contractor.
In 2018, Richard Allen Ellis Jr. accepted four bribe payments totaling more than $6,000 for repairs to schools in Broward County. That year, a portion of the school board’s budget – more than $10,000 – came from federal funds. Ellis was a supervisor for the custodial grounds division, and was responsible for processing work orders.
He continued to give the same contractor repair work and fast-tracked payments of the contractors invoices, according to the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida.
The work included repairing signage, paint stripping, asphalt sealcoating, and work on driveways, walkways, tennis, basketball and other courts, to dozens of schools. Between August 2018 and December 2018, the school board paid the contractor more than $119,000 for the repairs. Between September 2018 and December 2018, Ellis received payments for $1,140, $1,600, $750, and $2,640, according to the indictment.
The contractor had performed repair work for the school board dating back to 2016.
On July 13, Ellis pleaded guilty to four counts of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds. He’ll begin his prison sentence on or before Nov. 30, court records show.