No Dollar Left Behind: Money in the 2013 & 2015 Douglas County Colorado School Board Races
Douglas County Colorado experienced a swing from a conservative school board in 2013 to a mixed one in 2015. The 2013 school board members enacted policies that supported charter schools and merit pay for teachers. Most of the money involved in the 2013 school board races came from outside groups and large contributions from individuals who did not reside in Douglas County. The pendulum swung to the left in 2015 when Douglas County residents elected school board members that supported public schools and teachers unions. In 2015, most of the money involved in the school board race came from outside groups and individuals residing in Douglas County. County school board races are unique in Colorado because they are not subject to electioneering communication reporting requirements, contribution limits, Independent Ethics Commission jurisdiction or state bans on gifts from lobbyists. Interest in the 2013 and 2015 Douglas County Colorado school board races coupled with the aforementioned exemptions of school board races from typical campaign finance regulations resulted in the influx of massive amounts of money from outside groups.
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