Wichita school board of education campaign contributions

Recent campaign finance reports filed by candidates for the board of USD 259, the Wichita public school district, show some contributions that may be of interest to Wichita voters.

I’ve compiled a table of some of the contributions. This table is not comprehensive. It includes only the three incumbent candidates that have challengers: Lanora Nolan, Lynn Rogers, and Connie Dietz.

Joe Johnson, head of Schaefer Johnson Cox Frey Architecture, the firm that the Wichita school district selected without any competitive bidding to manage the implementation of the bond issue and the largest contributor to the bond issue campaign from last year, says “thank you” to several candidates. But it’s rather tepid, to say the least, as he could have contributed $500. And what didn’t Lanora Nolan do to earn the gratitude of Johnson? She received just $149, with the other two incumbent candidates receiving $250 each.

Unions contributed. United Teachers of Wichita, the Wichita teachers union, contributed the same amount to all three incumbents. That union will be negotiating its contract with the board sometime soon.

Unions involved in construction trades — Plumbers and Pipefitters Union and Wichita-Hutchinson Labor Federation — contributed the maximum amount to some of the incumbent candidates. It’s not clear as to their motive: thank you for passing the big bond issue? Of the three incumbent candidates, it’s Lynn Rogers that seems to be most appreciated by the trade unions. Lanora Nolan received no contributions from these unions.

Rogers also received $300 from Kansas Families for Education PAC, a group from Johnson County that advocates — incessantly, and without regard to facts — for more funding for public schools.

Lanora Nolan and her husband made a large contribution to her campaign. It also received $500 contributions from companies her husband is associated with.
Wichita school board campaign contributions 2009

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4 thoughts on “Wichita school board of education campaign contributions”

  1. I spoke to someone who sells commercial heating and AC equipment, and he told me that he definitely voted for the bond issue, although he did not contribute to the pro-bond group or candidates. He said he got work from the first bond issue and believed he would from the second too, so voting for it was a no-brainer. There’s something wrong with this, folks.

  2. The heating and plumbing unions have an understanding that the work at the school buildings will go to their members. Besides contributions they also coordinate a telephone bank to get out the vote. In addition, they usually support Democrats and liberal Republicans. No surprise here!

  3. Good work there, Bob. There’s nothing wrong with people using their money to back candidates, but members of the public ought to know how the money is being distributed.

  4. Cybex is lying. I dislike making such strong statements but we absolutely do not have such an agreement. I am a member of the plumbing & pipefitters union that includes the mechanical trade. We are disappointed in the lack of work we get from the school bonds but the bidding is strictly supervised and monitored and they cannot give a preference to us. We prefer the work pay a living wage and give preference to local workers but there is not and has not been an agreement for our union to get the work. It frustrates me that Cybex and others so easily lie while hiding behind a false name.
    We do support building projects that advance the interest of the community. This includes the arena and the school bond issues. And it’s the conservative republicans that usually join us on issues not the liberal ones.
    I just can’t understand lying.

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