Candidate for Denver Board of Education raises questions about a conflict of interest

School board candidate raises conflict of interst

DENVER - A candidate for Denver Board of Education is raising questions of a conflict of interest concerning his opponent's job. 

Roger Kilgore says his opponent Landri Taylor should get out of the race.  Taylor is the head of the Denver Urban League and the incumbent. The Urban league receives grant money from the schools to fund after-school programs.

 "I think one of the problems with conflict of interest is, the more your involved with them, the harder it is to see them," said Kilgore. "He's on both ends of a contract and I think if you ask the average person, if you're representing both sides a contractual party, there's an inherent conflict of interest in that."

Taylor told 7NEWS there is no issue, because his agency merely distributes the $140,000.
       
"We were simply the 501c3 that was the most credible and valid to service this grant, because we were doing the programs prior to this charge being made," said Taylor.  "I don't receive anything directly as a result of the dollars in this grant."
         
7NEWS checked with an official from Denver Public Schools who confirms that is the case. Yet, Kilgore feels it's better to stop a potential problem, before it starts.

"My concern is that so he and the school board does not get into a position of worrying about that kind of actuality," said Kilgore.
         
"Even if there's a perception of a conflict, it could be problematic," asked 7NEWS reporter Marc Stewart.  

"The only perception of a conflict is with my opponent," said Landry.

7NEWS asked for a response to the potential conflict. We were furnished a statement from Denver Board of Education president Mary Seawell.

"The contract with the Urban League was signed long before Mr. Taylor began serving on the Board of Education. When the contract is up for renewal, Mr. Taylor will have to recuse himself from any discussion, consideration, or vote regarding consideration of the terms of the contract. This has been the established practice of the Board of Education as these issues have come up periodically with a number of different Board members.”

 

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