School District Employee Uses Public Resources to Support Mayoral Candidate’s Campaign

An employee of the Sweetwater Union High School District (a district that is a regular in waste, fraud and mismanagement reports) in Chula Vista used the school district’s email service and distribution list to distribute an April 25 email urging students to assist mayoral candidate Mary Salas’ campaign.

The email lists campaign contact information and the time and location (Ms. Salas’ home) for volunteers to meet for a campaign “walk” – door-to-door campaigning in which volunteers typically distribute campaign fliers and knock on doors to tell residents about their candidate.

The subject line of the email is “COMMUNITY SERVICE,” and the message includes a disclaimer stating: “By no means is this an endorsement of Ms. Salas for public office – this is merely a Community Service opportunity for our students.”

Replying to questions about the email, Sweetwater Trustee John McGann said: “Using school contacts and District resources for a specific candidate is a clear violation of political campaign laws and District policy. The Superintendent has informed me that this issue will be dealt with immediately. I am disappointed that an employee would choose to use resources intended for the purpose of school business for political advertisements.” (Source: SD Rostra post by Greg Larkin, April 29.)

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