A northern New Jersey school district spent more than $14,000 to ensure its administrative offices and school lounge were free of bugs of the electronic variety.

No one is saying why Rockaway Township school officials felt the need to check whether electronic surveillance equipment was gathering information.

Receipts obtained by The Star-Ledger of Newark showed the district cut two checks, one for $9,000, the other for $5,400, to a company to conduct the sweeps in the summer.

Fitzgerald Investigations LLC searched for audio, video, active, passive, wired or wireless recording or transmitting devices, according to the newspaper.

The company said it found no surveillance devices in or outside of the buildings.  The president of the company is a former district security employee who was hired in 2007 by the board but is no longer on the district payroll, according to the newspaper.

School board president Michael Friedberger told the Star-Ledger that the board does not discuss security procedures "for obvious reasons," but said the cost was appropriate.

Messages left by The Associated Press for Friedberger, Schools Superintendent Gary Vitta and Business Administrator James Verbist were not returned.

Melissa Kobylinski, PTA president at the Katherine D. Malone School, told the newspaper that parents want an explanation as to why nearly $15,000 of taxpayer money was spent on the sweep.

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