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Rhee’s husband, Sacramento mayor, fined for ethics violations involving education initiatives

(Matthew Staver/Bloomberg via Getty )

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, husband of school reform leader Michelle Rhee, has agreed to to pay a fine of $37,500 for failing to report $3.5 million in donations, some of which were used for education initiatives, including Teach For America (for which Rhee once served as a teacher).

According to the San Luis Obispo newspaper The Tribune, Johnson was fined $37,500 by the California Fair Political Practices Commission, which said that he had failed in 25 cases to report donations within the required 30 days. The commission’s investigation was started after a Sacramento Bee story in September that said donations to Johnson’s “Think Big” arena task force weren’t reportedly properly. The Tribune said that some of the $3.5 million in donations was used for City Year, a program that places tutors and mentors in schools, as well as Teach For America.

The commission’s investigators said in a report that the mayor had told them the failure to report the donations in a timely fashion was not deliberate, and in a statement, Johnson was quoted by the newspaper as saying that his administration has improved procedures to “ensure we are fully compliant moving forward.”

Valerie Strauss covers education and runs The Answer Sheet blog.

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