BOE hires lawyer for school lunch investigation

James P. Fleissner hired as attorney for the free-lunch investigation. / Jessica Fairley

The Dougherty County Board of Education has voted to hire outside help to look into the school system's free-lunch program.

They made a unanimous decision to bring in James P. Fleissner for the task.

Board members say they want to get to the bottom of the free lunch scandal, but before they go forward they need an outside source to set legal guidelines.

School board chair James Bush says there's information on the lunchroom application that the U.S. Department of Agriculture says cannot be released to the public.

"First we must find out what it is that we can look at. So this is what he is going to give us that legal ramification of whether we can do it or can't do it," said Dougherty County School System Board of Education Chair Rev. James Bush.

Fleissner is a professor of law for the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University.

He's supervised all criminal litigation before the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, served as legal advisor for United States Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald and served on the Appellate Chiefs Working Group of the Attorney General's Advisory Committee.

Before hiring Fleissner, the board voted that his expenses should not exceed $10,000.

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