John Froonjian of The Press in Atlantic City, N.J., dug into insurance contracts in the Pleasantville school district to uncover a web of insider deals and millions wasted in a struggling district that gets two-thirds of its funding from the state. The Press found that in Pleasantville, school board contracts, political fundraising and private jobs are intertwined. The process has produced apparent conflicts of interest, possible violations of the state's pay-to-play law, defiance of election-finance laws and potential violations of the federal law designed to protect personal medical information. The Press investigation followed a successful lawsuit to gain access to minutes of the school board's executive sessions, many of which were missing or had never been recorded.
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