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New Orleans school contract may have involved nepotism

New Orleans school contract may have involved nepotism

The New Orleans Parish public school system (OPSB) will re-evaluate a front-running bid to build a local elementary school because the contractor has ties to the school board president, the Times-Picayune reported.

The company in question, Nolmar Construction LLC, was listed as a sub-prime contractor by Woodard Design + Build and was slated to do masonry work on the school. New Orleans school board president Nolan Marhsall Jr.’s half-siblings own Nolmar.

"OPSB never intended to conduct business with Nolmar," interim school superintendent Stan Smith said in a statement. "OPSB was simply awaiting confirmation from the Ethics Administration that 'half-siblings' are 'immediate family' as defined by the Board of Ethics, thereby disqualifying Nolmar from doing business with OPSB."

Executives at both Woodward and Nolmar have said they thought the bid was legal, and Woodward said that it will appeal the decision to re-evaluate.

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