Palm Beach County Commissioner Hal Valeche, noted for recent absences, was out again at Tuesday’s workshop.
“My doctors wanted me to take it easy to the end of the week, so I’ll be back next week for all the meetings,” Valeche told The Palm Beach Post by phone during the workshop’s lunch break.
Valeche’s aide sent commissioners an email Monday afternoon giving notice that Valeche would not attend.
The recently-reelected commissioner, and outgoing vice-mayor, missed weeks of meetings, and was hospitalized, in late October and early November. He said Nov. 9 he would not stand for the mostly-ceremonial mayor’s post, citing his health.
Valeche did attend last month’s organizational meeting and was sworn into his new term. He did not make mention at that meeting of his absences.
Valeche has not described his health situation. During the election, opponent Tony Bennett had called on Valeche to be more transparent about his health. Bennett, a Democrat, noted that Republican Gov. Rick Scott would appoint a replacement if Valeche, also a Republican, won re-election and could not finish that four-year term.
In 2009, Commissioner Addie Greene, citing health issues, resigned just a few months into her third term in the heavily Democratic, minority-dominated District 7. Republican governor Charlie Crist then selected Priscilla Taylor, a Democrat. Mack Bernard ousted Taylor this August.