Personal: 54, Democrat. Born in Spokane. Single. No children.
Education: Graduated from Ferris High School in 1975.
Career: City Councilman. Former owner of roofing and contracting business. Former owner of Comet restaurant and bar in Hillyard.
Political: Ran unsuccessfully for port district in 1982, state Legislature 1986, Spokane City Council in 1989 and 2001. Elected to City Council in 2003 and 2007.
Why do you feel you are the best candidate? I would have to say right now, experience, considering those who are running.
Would you support asking voters for a gas tax to extend the north Spokane freeway south of Francis? I want the north freeway, but you’ve got to realize we have a nickel tax that was imposed that was supposed to pay for that, so I really want a commitment as I go over to the Legislature to make sure that they understand that commitment and that I haven’t forgotten it, and I hope they don’t. There are other projects, but we need to get this one done with the money that’s already there.
Would you support tax increases to deal with the $3 billion shortfall over the next two years? There’s a horrible problem coming. Yeah. But it’s got to come with some review of what we’re spending money on to make sure we’re not wasting. The public has to be assured before we actually go out and ask for more or increased taxes. I just want to make sure there’s a thorough review and a fair review before I’m going to put my name on any type of an increase.
How would you cut the budget? I think the state government is to some extent overbearing. This is a difficult economic time. I would look at where they are fining businesses and try to cut back on it, unless it’s absolutely necessary because I think we’re hurting a lot of businesses in the state of Washington. … We’re getting a little too rough on business.
Should the state allow gay marriage? Not with the term marriage. I don’t mind a union. I don’t mind people using any other name. The reason I have a problem with that is I run into too many seniors and people I respect who believe that marriage has another connotation. I don’t have a problem with anybody using a word. I just don’t like it when they twist it to the dislikes of the people who are presently using it.
Do you believe that there is enough evidence to indicate that human activity is a significant cause of global warming? We are a small factor. We may have some effect and we probably do have a small effect. It’s not a large one.
Do you support Attorney General Rob McKenna’s challenge of the federal health care law? I think he took on authority that he doesn’t have. … He is trying to speak for the state when clearly the voice of the state is through the governor and the Legislature and they did not agree with him.
Do you support Initiative 1098, which would create an income tax on people earning $200,000 or more a year while cutting the business and occupation tax and property taxes? This particular proposal has got some real benefits. I’m sure there are those who say it’s got its drawbacks.
Do you support the state law that allows cities to install red light cameras? The state needs to put a lot of rules in to make sure that municipal governments follow those rules before they just allow them to just throw cameras in. … They’re racking up huge fines from a lot of their citizens. But are they really improving safety and are they really improving the attitude of the driver or are they just infuriating the public against the government, and I think the latter is the more likely.
What is your stance on abortion? I’m pro-choice.
Personal: 57, Republican. Born in New York. Has lived in Spokane area off and on since 1967. Married. No children.
Education: Graduated from Medical Lake High School in 1970. Earned associate degree in applied science from Spokane Community College in 1977.
Career: Sewer inspector for Spokane County utilities department since 1999. Formerly an inspector for Spokane County engineering department, starting in 1991. Former owner-operator tractor-trailer driver. Served in U.S. Navy in 1972 and 1973.
Political: First run for office.
Why do you feel you are the best candidate? Because I have the ability to say no. The reason that I got into this was that I’m upset about the way things are going, the runaway spending, and all the taxation that’s coming down. … I think that the problem is not so much that we don’t have enough revenue coming in to run the state, it’s that it’s poorly spent and spent too much.
Would you support asking voters for a gas tax to extend the north Spokane freeway south of Francis? No I would not. I have signed a pledge for no new taxes for the next two years.
Would you support tax increases to deal with the $3 billion shortfall over the next two years? There is only one tax increase that I would support and that would be: There is a current bill in the House proposed by a Democratic member that is to legalize pot, and she wants to tax it and get that revenue. I think if we did that, I could support that. … I want to dedicate it in four specific areas. Once we do, we can finance some high-dollar projects and then the money that’s currently going to those projects could be dispersed to where we have shortfalls now.
How would you cut the budget? Specifically, I would cut all payments to illegals for one, any social services, welfare or any of that. … They’re a big drain. The other thing that I would like to see is the revenue that is now not being collected because of the illegal drug trafficking come into the system. …There’s a lot of tax revenue right there that we’re not getting. If we got that into the system, we wouldn’t have the deficit, we would just be able to manage the spending that we have.
Should the state allow gay marriage? I’m for equal everything up to the point of the term marriage. … I think they should have absolutely equal legal status.
Do you believe that there is enough evidence to indicate that human activity is a significant cause of global warming? I believe that it’s totally bogus. … I don’t think it’s a true science any more like the old dedicated scientists used to be. They overemphasize what they’d like to have happen and things that go contrary to that they kind of cast aside and ignore.
Do you support Attorney General Rob McKenna’s challenge of the federal health care law? Absolutely. I think it’s necessary that we do that.
Do you support the state law that allows cities to install red light cameras? There are so many wrecks. I’m comfortable with (the law allowing cameras). I don’t think it should just be a sole source of revenue though. I think that what they’re charging for a ticket right now should be reduced.
Do you support Initiative 1098, which would create an income tax on people earning $200,000 or more a year while cutting the business and occupation tax and property taxes? I have mixed opinions of that. I am in favor of reducing the B and O tax. I think any tax that is anti-business is helping to create the problem that we have right now.
What is your stance on abortion? I am Christian. I believe life starts at conception, so I am not in favor of abortion. If I was elected I would honor the laws because they are the laws; it’s just not my personal choice.
Personal: 42, Democrat. Born in New York. Moved to Spokane in 1992. Divorced. Has one 10-year-old daughter.
Education: Graduated from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School in Bethesda, Md., in 1986. Received bachelor’s in government from Georgetown University in 1990.
Career: President of Spokane Indians Baseball Team, where he has worked for 18 years.
Political: First run for office. Member of city’s Human Services Advisory Board and Mayor Mary Verner’s Citizens Financial Advisory Committee.
Why do you feel you are the best candidate? Experience, my broad experience. I’ve got experience in the human services world. I’ve got very extensive experience as a small-business person. … The 3rd District is one of the poorest districts in the state. … And the only way we’re going to fix that and so many of the other problems that come from poverty is by putting people back to work. And I’m the only candidate that has run a successful small business and has the skills to do that.
Would you support asking voters for a gas tax to extend the north Spokane freeway south of Francis? I would support asking voters for a gas tax for a range of transportation projects, including continuation of the north-south freeway. But I think we need to make sure that we’ve got a sustainable transportation system for our future, and that includes roads for cars and for freight, which is crucial to this region, but it also means having great facilities for active transportation, for bike and pedestrian and for transit.
Would you support tax increases to deal with the $3 billion shortfall over the next two years?
I think tax increases should be the last choice, not the first choice. … The first thing is, if we grew the economy, if we get people back to work, that’s going to increase spending, that’s going to increase revenue to the state, so that’s the first thing we do. The second thing we do is to work on government efficiencies.
How would you cut the budget? I’d say, ‘OK, education is the paramount duty of the state and for our community.’ … So I would prioritize and I’d say, we can’t touch education. The other thing is that things like health care for children, some of those social safety-net programs that are essential, we’ve got to have our hands off those. …We need to look for how to make government work smarter.
Should the state allow gay marriage? I believe in equal rights for everyone. … So, yes, I support gay marriage.
Do you believe that there is enough evidence to indicate that human activity is a significant cause of global warming? Yes. I definitely believe that. We need to be active in this community in terms of sustainability.
Do you support Attorney General Rob McKenna’s challenge of the federal health care law? No. I am … a strong advocate in favor of the Obama plan.
Do you support the state law that allows cities to install red light cameras? Yes. I think cities should be able to make that decision on whether they want to use that as a tool in their city.
Do you support Initiative 1098, which would create an income tax on people earning $200,000 or more a year while cutting the business and occupation tax and property taxes? Yeah, I believe we need comprehensive tax reform. Our state’s tax system is one of the most unfair in the country for low- and middle-income families, and a progressive income tax is going to go a long way to helping with that fairness. My ideal plan would also lower sales tax, which is regressive and also harmful to small businesses.
What is your stance on abortion? I’m strongly pro-choice.
Personal: 55, Democrat. Born in Nampa, Idaho. Married. Has two grown children. Moved to Spokane in 1981.
Education: Graduated from Homedale High School, in Homedale, Idaho, in 1971. Earned psychology bachelor’s from University of Idaho in 1975. Earned master’s in social work at University of Washington in 1986.
Career: Mental health counselor at Spokane Addictions Recovery Centers in Spokane for past five years. Formerly worked as a social worker at the NATIVE Project, Eastern State Hospital and at the Washington Department of Social and Health Services.
Political: Lost bid for Spokane County Commissioner in 2002. Former member of Spokane’s Human Services Advisory Board.
Why do you feel you are the best candidate? Eighty-two percent of the state general fund budget is for education and social services, and these are the two areas that I’ve worked passionately to improve throughout my career as a social worker, 15 years of volunteering in Spokane Public Schools, three years of working at Eastern Washington University and as a community advocate throughout my career. … The 3rd District is the poorest district in the state, and I feel that I have a good understanding of how to help move people from poverty.
Would you support asking voters for a gas tax to extend the north Spokane freeway south of Francis? I would be supportive of an increase, but I would want us to really look at including more alternative forms of transportation as well because I think the best way that we’re going to have a more sustainable economy and less reliance on oil is by providing more options for alternative transportation. So I would like to include more than just the north-south freeway as part of the gas tax.
Would you support tax increases to deal with the $3 billion shortfall over the next two years? Any tax increase that we have needs to be voted on by the voters. I’ve knocked on 3,000 doors and people are saying they just really don’t have the money to pay more taxes. I think that the current 1098 (initiative) obviously has a lot of support. … That is a first step in helping with the budget deficit. If that (is passed) by the people, that will bring $1 billion into our coffers, which will be really helpful.
How would you cut the budget? One of the first places I’d look for cuts is in middle management. I worked for the state for 13 years, and one of the things that tended to happen is as we would hire people, it seems that we would often hire middle management people instead of direct service people. If we moved some of those people to direct services or cut out some of the middle management people, that would be the first step.
Should the state allow gay marriage? Absolutely.
Do you believe that there is enough evidence to indicate that human activity is a significant cause of global warming? Yes, and I do think that all of us need to look at how our own carbon footprint has an effect.
Do support Attorney General Rob McKenna’s challenge of the federal health care law? I do not. I think (the health care law) will be beneficial to everyone.
Do you support the state law that allows cities to install red light cameras? Yes. … They can be a good source of income. One of the problems with them is not a lot of the money goes back to the city because of the cost of them. So if we could bring that cost down it could be a positive revenue source.
Do you support Initiative 1098, which would create an income tax on people earning $200,000 or more a year while cutting the business and occupation tax and property taxes? I’m very supportive of that, particularly for the small businesses.
What is your stance on abortion rights? I am pro-choice.
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