The Chicago Public Schools’ contract with the law firm Jenner & Block LLP is being probed by the district’s inspector general.
The $250,000 contract was awarded to Jenner & Block last month for its work on a lawsuit that the district had considered filing against the state of Illinois over school funding. The lawsuit was never filed against the state, which ultimately approved additional funding for CPS in a stopgap budget measure.
Ronald Marmer, CPS’ general counsel, previously worked at Jenner & Block and is getting $200,000 annual payments from the firm for his $1 million severance pay package. The annual severance payments to Marmer will continue until 2018.
CPS CEO Forrest Claypool also previously worked at Jenner & Block.
CPS’ inspector general is looking into whether the contract violates the school district’s code of ethics.
Marmer reportedly recused himself from the district’s decision to hire Jenner & Block.