State schools chief Tom Torlakson will headline a Fresno fundraiser next week to help Proposition 51, the $9 billion school construction bond on the Nov. 8 ballot.
Tickets are $500, with event sponsorships to Thursday’s fundraiser topping out at $25,000.
School board members, though, needn’t worry about the entrance fee. They get in free.
Backers of the school bond have raised more than $7 million since last year, with much of the money coming from home builders, developers, school construction companies and others who regularly have business before school districts and their elected officials.
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Lisa Kaplan, a Natomas school board member who is helping to organize the Fresno event, said any school official or worker can attend the fundraiser for free. Organizers, she said, want to promote Proposition 51 among local school officials and encourage them to pass resolutions supporting the bond measure.
It’s not the goal, she added, to fill a room with school board members so donors can get face time. “There’s no conflict,” said Kaplan, the former assistant executive officer of the state board that distributes school bond money.
Next week’s fundraiser is for Torlakson’s recently created ballot-measure committee, Invest in California, not the most active Proposition 51 committee, Californians for Quality Schools.