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Avista names new director of government relations

A man who has managed Avista’s government relations in Washington state for 22 years has been tapped as the company’s overall director of government relations.

Collins Sprague will oversee all government, legislative, political and public policy activities, a news release from the Spokane energy company said. He replaces Tom Paine, who retired in early August after more than three decades with the company.

Among Sprague’s accomplishments was helping secure passage of legislation that allows Avista to count its Kettle Falls biomass facility as renewable energy under Initiative I-937. In 2010, Sprague received the Ron Gjerde Award as the state’s best business lobbyist of the year.

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