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Open Government Advocacy Project:
Hillside Board member files ethics complaint against fellow Board members
 

Issue Detail:

 
In her December 6, 2011 complaint filed with the New Jersey School Ethics Committee, which I received on May 11, 2012 in response to an Open Public Records Act request, Hillside school board member Rayba Watson alleged that Board president George L. Cook, III and Board member Robert Trotte voted on October 20, 2011 to award a $60,000 insurance contract to Fairview Insurance Agency Associates, Inc. even though a) A. Tony Monteiro, who allegedly served as both Cook\'s and Trotte\'s campaign managers is claimed by Watson to be \"one of [Fairview\'s] representatives\" and b) Fairview\'s bid was allegedly $12,000 higher than the lowest bidder. According to Watson\'s sworn complaint, both Cook and Trotte had been previously informed by school board attorney Perry Lattiboudere to remove themselves, apparently because of a conflict of interest, from the Board\'s interviews with Fairview. A copy of Watson\'s complaint is on-line here. It has been referred to the Office of Administrative Law and bears OAL Docket # EEC 3097-12 (School Ethics Commission Docket No. C53-11) and is scheduled for hearing on 09/18/12 before Judge Jones. About me and why I\'m posting this. I chair the New Jersey Libertarian Party\'s Open Government Advocacy Project. Although ethics complaints against elected officials are of vital public importance, the School Ethics Commission makes it difficult for the public and media to learn about these complaints\' existence until well into the process. The allegations are not proven and Cook and Trotte should be presumed not to have acted unethically unless and until the Commission finds otherwise. John Paff, Chairman New Jersey Libertarian Party\'s Open Government Advocacy Project Somerset, New Jersey

 

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New Jersey Libertarian Party Open Government Advocacy Project: Hillside Board member files ethics complaint against fellow Board members. May 15, 2012.
URL: http://ogtf.lpcnj.org/2012/2012136PR/
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