[UPDATED: School board sources confirmed that former school construction chief Mike Garretson died today of heart failure at age 64. Garretson was a controversial figure at the School Board who steamrolled the construction boom that ended with the board $2 billion in debt and overbuilt with a projected 30,000-plus empty seats. See comments section for email announcing the news.]
The high roller for wheels at the Rothstein auction weren't there for pleasure -- it was business.
The auction wound up being delayed by the sheer number of registrants for more than an hour and a half. But once it started, it moved fast, with the cars and vessels going in a little over an hour for nearly $6 million -- money that is slated by the government to go to Rothstein's victims.
Sources tell me that one man put in the high bid on three vehicles, including the Bugatti Veyron ($858,000), the Mercedes SLR McLaren convertible ($301,000), and the 1967 Corvette Stingray ($103,000). That's $1,262,000 total. The buyer: Gene Morales of Euro Motorsports, which has a high-profile showroom at 925 Broward Blvd.
Morales got a write-up recently for dealing cars to another Scott -- music producer Scott Storch. I got Morales on the phone shortly after the auction, and he told me he purchased the Bugatti for an "investor" before he had to meet a customer. He said he would pick up the conversation later, and I'll update when he does.
Now we see that Morales has already put the car up for auction on EBay with a minimum bid of $949,000.
-- Well, we broke the story about BSO Comdr. Alvin Pollock and his inside role with the Miami Dolphins. Pollock, who works as a security guru for the football team at the same time he runs the sheriff's courthouse operations, reportedly escorted Dolphin Phillip Merling out a side door of the jail to avoid media and then gave him a ride home. Yesterday Sheriff Al Lamberti reassigned Pollock as the internal investigation continues. Tease: Now we're hearing that Pollock pulled strings with another governmental agency on behalf of another Dolphins star. Will report.
-- Finally, thought we'd end the day with some fun. After the jump, I have posted a photograph of a Broward County politician from his younger days. The first person who identifies the politician in the photograph will get a signed copy of "Florida Pulp Fiction," which I've found to be absolutely sensational bathroom reading.