Why Is David Alvarez Flouting Campaign Finance Law? Unintentionally Ironic OPSB Candidate Promises to Bring Transparency To District

Post-Script: 11/01/2016

Wonders never cease! It appears that David Alvarez has finally filed his missing campaign finance reports, albeit three weeks late. His 30-P report, along with his 10-P report, simultaneously appeared on the Louisiana Board of Ethics website this afternoon. – PCC

It’s November 1st – All Saints Day – and for aspiring officeholders across the land (and incumbents defending their turf), it means they have one more frenzied week of campaigning to go before voters head to the polls.

But for David Alvarez, the teachers union-backed candidate running to represent District 6 on the Orleans Parish School Board, November 1st has added significance: It’s the 21st day he’s been in violation of Louisiana’s campaign finance law.

OPSB District 6 covers a large swath of Uptown New Orleans, including the Audubon, Carrollton, Hollygrove and Gert Town neighborhoods.
OPSB District 6 covers a large swath of Uptown New Orleans, including the Audubon, Carrollton, Hollygrove and Gert Town neighborhoods.

According to the Louisiana Election Code, OPSB candidates are required to file at least two campaign finance reports prior to Election Day: a so-called “30-P” report due 30 days before the primary and a “10-P” report due 10 days before the primary.

The deadline for the 30-P report was October 11th. As of last night, there were no campaign finance filings of any kind from David Alvarez found on the Louisiana Board of Ethics website. On the other hand, a search did return several campaign finance records from Alvarez’s opponent, incumbent board member Woody Koppel, including his 30-P report, which was filed by the deadline.

David Alvarez and Woody Koppel.
David Alvarez and Woody Koppel.

Ironically, Alvarez has campaigned on a platform promising to increase fiscal transparency at both OPSB and charter schools. Moreover, his campaign literature says he’ll help move the district beyond the status quo “that obscures openness behind a cloak of bureaucracy, policy and privacy that discourages democracy within our schools.”

Yet his failure to comply with campaign finance requirements belies his professed commitment to transparency and openness. It’s also grossly irresponsible, especially since Alvarez could have submitted his overdue report (online, no less) at any point over the past three weeks.

He didn’t.

With the impending return of schools to local control, we need leaders on the Orleans Parish School Board who will sweat the details and not drop the ball. By failing to follow campaign finance rules, David Alvarez has already failed on both counts. That’s why voters in District 6 should cast their ballots next week for Woody Koppel.

Woody Koppel for School Board District 6 ” Woody Koppel #88 for School Board District 6

Re-Elect Woody Koppel as the District 6 member of the Orleans Parish School Board.

Written by Peter Cook

Pete became involved in education reform as a 2002 Teach For America corps member in New Orleans Public Schools and has worked in various capacities at Teach For America, KIPP, TNTP, and the Recovery School District. As a consultant, he developed teacher evaluation systems and served as a strategic advisor to school district leaders in Cleveland, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. He now writes about education policy and politics and lives in New Orleans.


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