Progressive Values Committee, a political action committee (PAC) out of Hudson County, spent $15,255 in supporting five candidates in last November’s school board race, according to Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) filings.
Incumbents Oshin Castillo, Nakima Redmon, Manny Martinez, Vincent Arrington, and newcomer Eddy Pichardo benefited from the PAC’s spending. Each received $3,051 in expenditure from the group.
The PAC spent the funds to support the candidates without coordination with the campaigns, according to Redmon’s treasurer Kenneth Simpson. PACs are prohibited from coordinating with campaigns.
Three of the five supported candidates won in the 17-person race. Arrington and Pichardo appeared victorious on election night, but fell short after mail-in ballots were counted.
Progressive Values Committee sent out mailers supporting the incumbent ticket. The group, aligned with the Democratic Party, was criticized by other candidates for meddling in a local non-partisan race.
The PAC also spent $9,000 to support three candidates — Ralph Walker, Jody Polidoro, and Dick Wolfe — in the Bloomfield school board race.
Earlier in the year, the same group spent $138,000 to back Andre Sayegh for mayor.