Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Reinoso answers conflict-of-interest questions

Victor Reinoso, candidate for the District 2 Board of Education seat, answered questions about a possible conflict of interest with The Common Denominator. Reinoso is the Director of Education Initiatives for the Federal City Council, a private but politically powerful group, and he has said he will keep that job if he wins the election next week.
Reinoso asserted today that there would not be a conflict of interest in working both jobs, if he is elected to the $15,000 a year school board post.

Contrary to what some may think, he said, the Federal City Council does not work to promote its own agenda for D.C. Public Schools (DCPS). Reinoso said his employer works with DCPS on projects designated by the school system.

"There's nothing that I do related to DCPS that isn't done...at the request of DCPS," he said, concerning his job with the business organization.

Reinoso said the Federal City Council currently is working with DCPS in two key areas: special education and fund-raising. Reinoso said he would recuse himself from voting as a school board member on issues that directly relate to his work at the Federal City Council or he would cease working on that issue for his employer.

He said one possible area where he might face this decision involves charter schools. The Federal City Council has supported what Reinoso called "top performing" charter schools being permitted to use DCPS facilities for their programs, a controversial stance for many public school advocates.

Prior to entering the race, Reinoso said, he sought the opinions of some of the current Board of Education members and attorneys about whether they thought it would be a conflict of interest for him to run for the school board and retain his current job.

No comments: