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New Conflict of Interest Act Not an Issue for Brighton Area Schools

Brighton Schools Trustee John Conely addressed the new public act during Monday night's meeting.

Brighton Area School Board Trustee John Conely voiced some concerns over the new conflict of interest act and how it applies to the district during Monday night's meeting. The new act was signed by Gov. Rick Snyder last week.

The bill was authored by Sen. Joe Hune and ensures that a school board member, legal counsel or consultant would have to disclose whether he or she has a conflict of interest and exactly what the conflict is.

“The bill simply states that if a board member is presumed to have a conflict of interest due to his or her family member having a financial stake in the contract or other financial transaction, that the board member abstain from voting,” Hune said in a press release. "School board members have great responsibility in their positions, and we must make sure that only fair judgments and votes can be cast without outside forces affecting their decision.”

Superintendent Greg Gray said there was only one school board member with a family member employed by the district - Treasurer Jay Krause.

Krause's wife works for the district, but her position is grant-funded, Gray said. 

"She doesn't actually have a contract that Mr. Krause votes on," Gray said. "I don't think it matters because she doesn't have a contract, but we'll check with our attorneys to make sure."

George Kilpatrick January 17, 2013 at 06:32 PM
I think it's ridiculous that we actually had go so far as to to enact legislation to assist with keeping board members ethical. Maybe the current board has ethical convictions but it seems that previous board members have been less than ethical. I hope someday this legislation is expanded to ALL public/municipal boards.

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