2121 - Board Member Conflict of Interest

All board members are subject to the criminal laws related to conflicts of interest in public office, including strict restrictions against having a pecuniary interest in any business of the board. In addition, board members will not let any personal or business interest interfere with his or her duties as a public official, including ethical duties as specified in the Code of Ethics for School Board Members, policy 2120.

A member of the board will not do any of the following:

  1. obtain a direct benefit from a contract that he/she is involved in making or administering on behalf of the board, unless an exception is allowed pursuant to G.S. 14-234 or other law;
  2. influence or attempt to influence anyone who is involved in making or administering a contract on behalf of the board when the board member will obtain a direct benefit from the contract; or
  3. solicit or receive any gift, favor, reward, service or promise of reward, including a promise of future employment, in exchange for recommending, influencing or attempting to influence the award of a contract.
  4. accept a gift or favor from any person or group desiring to do or doing business with the school system, unless such gifts are instructional products or advertising items of nominal value that are widely distributed; or
  5. solicit or accept any gifts from any potential provider of E-rate services or products in violation of federal gifting rules.

A board member is involved in administering a contract if he/she oversees the performance of the contract or has authority to interpret or make decisions regarding the contract. A board member is involved in making a contract if he/she participates in the development of specifications or terms of the contract or participates in the preparation or award of the contract.

A board member derives a direct benefit from a contract if the board member or his/her spouse does any of the following: (1) has more than a 10 percent ownership or other interest in an entity that is a party to the contract; (2) derives any income or commission directly from the contract; or (3) acquires property under the contract. An exception is allowed for employment contracts between the board of education and the spouse of a board member. However, the board member involved may not deliberate or vote on the spouse’s employment contract or attempt to influence any other person who is involved in making or administering the contract.

Legal References: G.S. 14-234 -234.1; 133-32; 47 C.F.R. 54.503; FCC Sixth Report and Order 10-175 Cross References: Code of Ethics for School Board Members (policy 2120), Employee Conflict of Interest (policy 7730)

ADOPTED: 2001-12-03 REVISED: 2004-08-02; 2010-12-05; 2016-12-13