Lame duck D.C. school board member Frank Shaffer-Corona (At-large) can travel to Seattle, San Francisco and Miami on school system funds before he leaves office in January -- but he probably will not get the $50-a-day expense money he wants for the six days he plans to be out of town.
The D.C. school board passed a new rule Wednesday night to prevent lame duck board members from spending more than half their discretionary funds before leaving office in January. It was an apparent move to prevent Shaffer-Corona's trip.
Shaffer-Corona, however, told board members he had already procured $815 from the school system for his air fare and insisted that the new rule will not change his plans to travel to the three cities to speak with Hispanics about bilingual education.
Most board members agreed that they could not stop Shaffer-Corona from using a ticket that already has been purchased.
Shaffer-Corona, who has traveled to Cuba and Mexico on school funds and who last year placed $1,900 worth of phone calls to Iran on his school board phone, said he would continue to demand the per diem expenses.
"Who the hell do these people think they are that they can set up a different set of rules for me just because I'm Mexican?" Shaffer-Corona asked.
Shaffer-Corona said he started this year with a funding allotment of about $9,600. Of that, about $1,600 was earmarked for travel expenses. School financial officials said Shaffer-Corona is the only board member who has virtually exhausted his personal budget.