Over the three-day weekend, two powerful unions — the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor and the SEIU Local 99 (which represents classified LAUSD employees) kicked off what is expected to be an intense period of activity by independent expenditure (IE) committees over the next few months.
The two organizations spent a combined $54,564 in support of School Board President Monica Garcia, going mostly to a poll, a field program and direct mail (see their first piece of campaign literature here). The County Fed also spent $25,161 on a flyer campaign for Antonio Sanchez, a newcomer running for the East Valley’s District 6 seat (see Sanchez flyer here). No IE spending has taken place so far in the Westside’s District 4, which pits incumbent Steve Zimmer against challenger Kate Anderson.
Independent expenditures are much like Super PACs – they are spent by organizations working independently from a candidate’s campaign and their funding isn’t subject to any contribution limits. In 2011, IEs for school board races totaled more than $4.6 million. In previous school board elections, the biggest IE campaigns have come from the Coalition for School Reform, UTLA and SEIU Local 99.
Previous posts: SEIU Endorses Garcia, Zimmer and Sanchez, Local 99, LAUSD’s “Other” Labor Union, Antonio Sanchez, Consensus Candidate?, Democrats Decline to Endorse Garcia, District 6: SEIU & UTLA Endorsements*