The members of the Madison School Board and other school officials met on Saturday morning to organize a campaign for passing a new property-tax opt-out with a public vote.
...The supporters of the ballot measure will depend on a group of volunteers who will make up an opt-out committee and campaign for its approval, according to school board member Tom Farrell.
Farrell said officials would try to recruit as many volunteers as possible, tapping many of the same persons who helped pass the opt-out measure four years ago.
Farrell said the school district was limited to spending public money on the legally-required [sic] advertising that announces the election.
"The district can't spend money on making flyers and sending them home with students or spend money on other campaigning," Farrell said. You can't use school dollars to support the 'yes' vote because that's illegal" [Chuck Clement, "School to Recruit Opt-Out Committee," Madison Daily Leader, 2010.02.22, p. 1].
Farrell knows his SDCL 12-27-20. But I wonder: the board's Saturday meeting was an official meeting, with a quorum and minutes and everything. I would assume board members were paid their usual per-meeting fee of $35. Superintendent Schaefer and other staff were present, so I assume they were on the clock. The participants in this meeting, all drawing public salaries, drew up a list of possible committee members to work for the approval of the opt-out.
The school board's purpose in this meeting certainly seems to have been to work toward influencing the outcome of the opt-out vote. And if we followed the local rules, we paid our board members (and arguably our school staff) to have this meeting.
So someone parse this out for me: did our school board just expend funds to influence an election or not?