Ybarra pays Leroy $118,000 for legal work — but she won’t say why


David Leroy has received more than $118,000 performing legal work for state superintendent Sherri Ybarra.

But Ybarra’s staff won’t say exactly what the prominent Boise attorney was paid to do, citing attorney-client privilege.

Here’s what we know, through a public records request and past coverage:

  • From May 18 through Feb. 4, the State Department of Education paid Leroy’s law office $118,510.
  • Leroy received the bulk of that money in May and June, when the former attorney general and lieutenant governor represented Ybarra in a Supreme Court case. Ybarra took the Legislature and the State Board of Education to court last spring, in an unsuccessful attempt to stop the transfer of 18 IT and data management staffers and $2.7 million from the SDE to the State Board. In July, Idaho Education News said Leroy would receive close to $77,000 in connection with the case.

However, we don’t know much about the rest of the money — and the six payments Leroy has received since Aug. 31.

The work does coincide with a shakeup in Attorney General Lawrence Wasden’s office. The deputy attorney general assigned to SDE was transferred, Ybarra spokeswoman Kris Rodine said Tuesday, and Leroy was assigned “various other matters of state legal business.”

The SDE has declined to provide specifics, saying the advice Ybarra sought “is protected by attorney-client privilege” and is not subject to disclosure under public records law.


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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