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In brief: Commissioners seek disaster declaration

Wet weather prevented spring wheat from being planted and ruined winter wheat that was planted last fall in Kootenai County, the Board of Commissioners said Tuesday.

As a result, the board forwarded to Idaho Gov. Butch Otter an agricultural disaster emergency declaration, asking that he request a U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretarial Disaster Designation, a news release from the commissioners said.

The designation would allow farmers and land owners to apply for federal assistance from the USDA Farm Service Agency, the release said.

Staff reports

Camel sighting leads to women’s arrests

Reports of a camel on a property in eastern Spokane County led to the recent arrests of two women who’d already been charged with animal cruelty.

The camel belonged to a neighbor, but animal control officers say Kelly J. Covey, 49, had two dogs in her camper – a violation of a court order not to possess animals. The restriction has been in place since a Jan. 29 raid at the property, 6204 N. Idaho Road, that led to charges against Covey, her mother, Carol McMullen, 70, and McMullen’s son, James W. McMullen.

In addition to the camel, investigators from the Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Service on June 3 found cows and llamas that also violated court orders.

Carol McMullen has previous convictions for animal cruelty, and was arrested again last week. Covey was booked into jail Friday.

The three relatives face several felony animal cruelty charges after 123 farm animals and pets were seized in January. Officers found 78 dead animals on the property, located between the Idaho state line and Newman Lake.

Meghann M. Cuniff

Redistricting forum planned in Spokane

The Washington State Redistricting Commission will host a public forum in Spokane on July 12.

The commission is taking public comment on plans to redraw congressional boundaries to create a 10th district to accommodate population growth.

The forum will be at Spokane Falls Community College, Lounges A and B, 3410 W. Fort Wright Drive. The forum starts at 6 p.m.

Additional hearings will be held July 13 in Walla Walla and July 14 in Moses Lake.

For more information, go to

Associated Press


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