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Judge declares Roskelley can run

Former Spokane County Commissioner John Roskelley on Thursday beat back a challenge to his candidacy to reclaim his old office.

Visiting Superior Court Judge Allen C. Nielson ruled that Roskelley, a Democrat, is qualified to run in the District 1 commissioner race against incumbent Republican Todd Mielke.

Mielke and fellow Republican Jeff Baxter had sought to have Roskelley stricken from the ballot after he had temporarily moved into another commission district.

Nielson ruled that Roskelley had lived in the district previously for more than 26 years and that he has been planning to build a new home on East Heron View Lane, also in the district.

He registered to vote from the Heron View Lane address in January even though there was no dwelling there until early June, after he had filed his candidacy.

His Heron View Lane registration was ruled valid earlier this month by a visiting auditor in a challenge brought by the Republican Party chairman in Spokane County.

Mielke asked Nielson for reconsideration of an earlier ruling that Roskelley was qualified, but Nielson denied it in a hearing Thursday.

The judge said Roskelley’s current registration in District 1 qualified him to run.

Roskelley served nine years on the commission from 1995 until 2004, representing the district.

Roskelley said fighting the challenge has cost him in excess of $12,000 in legal fees.

Mielke said he would consult with lawyers before deciding whether to appeal Thursday’s ruling.



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