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Eye On Olympia

Several square off for retiring Rep. Mary Skinner’s House seat…

Yakima City Councilman Norm Johnson has filed campaign paperwork to run as a Republican to replace Rep. Mary Skinner, R-Yakima, who recently announced that she's stepping down at the end of the year.

And Johnson's not the only one. According to the Yakima Herald-Republic, Democrat Vickie Ybarra and Republican Bob McLaughlin are also getting in the race. Interestingly, all three have strong educational credentials: Johnson was a teacher in Mabton and a longtime teacher and principal in Toppenish, Ybarra's been on the Yakima School Board since 2002, and McLaughlin retired as Union Gap school superintendent four years ago.

Regardless of who wins, that educational background should come in handy. The state is trying to revamp (and boost) school funding, with a key set of recommendations due to lawmakers in December -- just before whoever wins Skinner's seat is sworn in.

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