Spin Control

Race heating up for McLaughlin's Spokane City Council seat

The most contested race in this year’s three races for Spokane City Council seats is almost certain to be in the Northwest council district.

One seat in each of the three districts will be on the ballot this year, but the position in the Northwest district already is attracting the most candidates.

That’s largely because incumbent City Councilwoman Nancy McLaughlin is term limited, leaving the seat open. The other two seats on the ballot are represented by council members Jon Snyder and Amber Waldref, who are running for reelection.

As of Thursday, two candidates had announced candidacies with the state Public Disclosure Commission for the seat representing South Spokane (District 2), three candidates had filed for the seat representing Northeast Spokane (District 1) and four had filed for the seat representing Northwest Spokane (District 3).

The fight for McLaughlin’s seat should be all the more contentious because of the close split on the current City Council between members with backing from the Republican and Democratic parties. There have been several high-profile 4-3 votes in the past year that favor the Republican-leaning members.

Read on for info on the four candidates who have announced their intentions to run for the seat.

Michael Cannon, 35

Neighborhood: Five Mile

Day job: Manager of account management at Bank of America Merchant Services, co-owner of the Elements Therapeutic Massage franchise on the South Hill.

Volunteer positions: chairman of the city Community Housing and Human Services Board.

Education: Graduated from Central Valley High School in 1995. Earned business administration bachelor’s degree from Whitworth University.

Positions on February ballot propositions: Favored Props 1, 2 and 3.

Party leanings: Calls himself a “moderate Republican.”

Political experience: First run for office.

Evaluation of Mayor David Condon: “He seems to be tackling a lot of problems in a short time and is very productive.”

Campaign funds: Has raised $11,980.

Notable contributors: Spokane City Councilman Steve Salvatori; Larry Soehren, chief operating officer of Kiemle and Hagood; Patrick Devries, owner of DeVries Business Services.

Kelly Cruz, 52

Neighborhood: West Central

Day job: Unemployed carpenter

Volunteer positions: former chairman of the West Central Neighborhood Council.

Education: Graduated from North Central High School in 1978. Completed Spokane Home Builders journeyman carpentry program.

Positions on February ballot propositions: Supported Props 1 and 3. Opposed Prop 2.

Party leanings: Says he is an independent.

Political experience: First run for office.

Evaluation of Mayor David Condon: “He’s done a pretty good job.” But he says the mayor should have agreed with Council President Ben Stuckart’s proposal to use some money from the police pension fund to keep more police officers on the street. Stuckart says the fund is over-funded.

Campaign funds: Has raised $180.

Curtis Fackler, 57

Neighborhood: North Indian Trail

Day job: Independent business consultant specializing in the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as Obamacare. Independent insurance agent selling health and life insurance. Air Force veteran.

Volunteer positions: chairman of the North Indian Trail Neighborhood Council, former chairman of the Spokane County Republican Party., member of the city Community Housing and Human Services Board.

Education: Earned bachelor’s degree in marketing from Ohio State University and Master of Business Finance from Golden Gate University.

Positions on February ballot propositions: Supported Props 1, 2, and 3.

Political experience: Ran three times for state insurance commissioner.

Party leanings: Calls himself a “small business Republican.”

Evaluation of Mayor David Condon: Says Condon is moving the city in the right direction. “I like the fact that he makes decisions,” he said. “He’s definitely shaking things up.”

Campaign funds: Hasn’t reported contributions yet to the state Public Disclosure Commission.

Candace Mumm, 51

Neighborhood: Five Mile

Day job: CEO of Smartland, a housing development company active in Washington and Arizona; former broadcast journalist at several outlets, including KXLY.

Volunteer positions: former chairwoman of the City Plan Commission, stakeholder Manager representing Five Mile Neighborhood Council in the development of the city’s Five Mile Neighborhood Plan.

Education: Graduated from Shadle Park High School in 1978. Earned bachelor’s in broadcast journalism from Pacific Lutheran University and a Master of Business Administration from Gonzaga University.

Positions on February ballot propositions: Supported Props 1 and 3. Opposed Prop 2.

Political experience: First run for office, but was the spokeswoman for Mary Verner’s reelection campaign in 2011 and for Rich Cowan’s 2012 unsuccessful bid for Congress against U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.

Party leanings: Says she is an independent, though she has connections to both parties. She said she is a former Republican precinct committee officer and was a delegate at the state Republican Party Convention. But recently, she was heavily involved in two campaigns backed by the Spokane County Democratic Party: Cowan’s and Verner’s.

Evaluation of Mayor David Condon: She said she didn’t have an opinion about Condon’s work as mayor. “I recently met David Condon, and I look forward to working with him.”

Campaign funds: Has raised $14,170.

Notable contributors: City Council President Ben Stuckart; former Spokane County commissioners Bonnie Mager and John Roskelley; former Spokane Mayor Sheri Barnard; former Spokane City Council members Phyllis Holmes and Dean Lynch; former state legislators Don Barlow and Dennis Dellwo; Former Pend Oreille County Sheriff Tony Bamonte; Spokane businessman Chud Wendle.

The three propositions on the February ballot were:

Prop 1: Strengthening powers of the Spokane police ombudsman office.

Prop 2: Requiring five-seventh majority votes for the City Council to raise taxes.

Prop 3: Tax increase to support the Spokane Public Library.




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