Jan 11, 2008

Rich Nafziger resigns from Olympia School Board

This is a remarkable turn of events:
Nafziger, who was elected to the board in 2003 and re-elected in an uncontested race in November, said Thursday that his position on the board conflicts with his job as chief of staff of the Washington Senate Democratic Caucus. He accepted his new job in October, after he had filed for the November election, and his resignation from the board is effective Monday.

Nafziger said he hoped to find a way to avoid the potential conflicts and stay on the board, but "I wouldn't be able to do either (job) well," he said.

During most of Nafziger's term on the board, he was chief clerk of the House, a job that mostly was administrative. The House attorney determined that the job wasn't a conflict of interest.

Education will be a hot topic in the upcoming legislative session, and attorneys with the caucus and the Senate Ethics Committee said there would have been a perceived conflict of interest between Nafziger's new job and his elected position, he said.

"My job is to give senators information on education policy," he said.
This leaves Barclift, Lehman, Shirley, and new member Frank Wilson to determine his replacement. I'm curious if Nafziger will comment further on his blog. The upshot, though, is that Board politics just got a lot more... interesting.

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