Boise elections: Oppenheimer, Walker hold fundraising edge

Two challengers have a big fund-raising edge in Boise’s Sept. 6 school board elections.

Beth Oppenheimer
Beth Oppenheimer

Sunshine reports were due Tuesday — a week before three candidates vie for two six-year trustee terms.

Here are highlights from the reports (you can click on the candidates’ names to read the reports in full):

Beth Oppenheimer. The executive director of the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children raised $8,210 and spent $3,678 during the filing period.

Oppenheimer’s supporters include some prominent education advocates — Skip and Esther Oppenheimer of Boise (no relation to the candidate); former Boise trustee Bev Harad; former Boise district superintendent Stan Olson; and Idaho Education Association executive director Robin Nettinga. Oppenheimer also received donations from three Boise City Council members and five Boise Democratic legislators.

Monica Walker
Monica Walker

Monica Walker. The senior loan officer reported $3,192 in contributions, and $473 in expenditures.

Her supporters include three Boise Democrats who sit on the Legislature’s education committees: Sen. Cherie Buckner-Webb and Reps. Hy Kloc and Ilana Rubel. (The three legislators also support Oppenheimer.) Walker also received contributions from City Council members Scot Ludwig and Ben Quintana, who also donated to Oppenheimer’s campaign.

Walker also received $1,350 from firefighters’ unions.

Dave Wagers
David Wagers

David Wagers. The lone incumbent in the race, appointed in January 2015, Wagers is running a low-budget campaign. He reported raising and spending $93. Wagers is funding his campaign himself, and with in-kind donations from his business, Idaho Candy Co.

The Boise sunshine reports are a first of their kind. A 2015 law requires candidates in larger school districts to file financial reports — but the law was not in effect for the May 2015 trustee elections.

As a “charter” district, governed by a document that predates statehood, Boise holds its elections in September in even-numbered years.

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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