Complaints filed against Bradenton city councilman

Bradenton City Commissioner Bill Sanders
Bradenton City Commissioner Bill Sanders(City of Bradenton)
Published: May. 17, 2022 at 1:42 PM EDT

BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - At least three city staff members have filed complaints against a Bradenton city councilman for creating what they say is a hostile work environment.

The complaints are against Councilman Bill Sanders, alleging he cursed at staff, raised his voice and responded to staff in an aggressive manner.

A third-party agency is working to mediate the issues that appear to stem from Sanders asking for the reporting of gifts and the questioning of the city being listed as a sponsor for a local parade, which has been documented in emails between Sanders and staff members.

“The ethics question is for all elected officials to report gifts as required by law. Information was declined for me to submit with value of gifts per your email. I was told they were free. … Elected officials cannot accept gifts without reporting as we our aware of a local attorney losing his license for regifting them to a judge. I take this seriously,” Sanders wrote in an email.

One complainant stated that Sanders had made City Hall “a miserable place to come each day.”

Emails documenting the conflict between the staff over these ethics complaint were sent to ABC7 by a city spokesperson.

“Regarding complaints of inappropriate behavior directed at City of Bradenton employees, an investigation is being conducted by an outside lawyer experienced in conducting independent investigations and who specializes in employment law. We will let that process run its course. Accordingly, we will have no further comment at this time.” said a city official.

Three separate complaints have been raised, documents show.

Sanders tells ABC7 that his concerns involve contracts within the City,

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