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Stories tagged: Al French


Commissioners to host public meetings on Spokane County budget

The Spokane County commissioners will host a series of community meetings to inform the public and gather input as they craft the county’s budget for 2019.


Democrats see fresh energy in Spokane County primary; French shrugs off second-place finish

Democrats fared well in Spokane County races Tuesday, but can that momentum last in the general election?


Local officials look to ‘Amazon effect’ to boost region’s economy

Beyond the Amazon fulfillment center’s 1,500-plus jobs, local officials see the company’s presence here as an opportunity to raise Spokane’s profile as a place to do business.


UPDATED: Fri., July 20, 2018, 6:30 p.m.

County pushes back against state move to expand commission

As Washington moves forward on a new law to expand Spokane County’s board of commissioners from three members to five, the county is pushing back, with a lawsuit planned to …


UPDATED: Fri., March 2, 2018, 8:49 a.m.

Marijuana odor rules prompt clash between Clean Air board members Stuckart, French

Spokane City Council President Ben Stuckart said he’s joined the agency overseeing the region’s air pollution in direct response to new regulations and fees for marijuana business owners. Spokane County …


Spokane lawmakers propose expanding county commission, electing by district

The bill would take effect in 2022 and would add two members to the Spokane County Commission. It’s received bipartisan support in Olympia and the city of Spokane, but current …


UPDATED: Thu., Jan. 4, 2018, 10:27 p.m.

Spokane County air pollution regulators approve new rules, fees to battle smelly marijuana farms

Dozens of marijuana farmers in Spokane County will have to pay fees ranging from $500 to $2,000 this year to cover the expenses of enforcing state laws governing nuisance smells. …


UPDATED: Thu., Dec. 7, 2017, 9:05 p.m.

Spokane County budget includes $400,000 cut for regional health district

Some agencies and departments that receive funding from Spokane County avoided steep cuts in 2018. The Spokane County Regional Health District isn’t one of them.


UPDATED: Tue., Dec. 5, 2017, 6:20 a.m.

Split Spokane County Commission approves 2018 budget

Commissioners Al French and Mary Kuney voted in favor of the spending plan, which will use money set aside from the road construction budget to cover day-to-day expenses next year …


UPDATED: Fri., Oct. 27, 2017, 8:38 p.m.

Spokane County won’t ask job applicants about their criminal records

The Spokane County Board of Commissioners voted this week to remove questions about past criminal convictions from county job applications.


UPDATED: Fri., Sept. 29, 2017, 9:54 p.m.

Mary Kuney sworn in as Spokane County commissioner

Mary Kuney was sworn in as a Spokane County commissioner Friday evening, two days after Gov. Jay Inslee appointed her to fill the seat that previously belonged to Shelly O’Quinn.


UPDATED: Wed., Sept. 27, 2017, 10:19 p.m.

Governor taps Mary Kuney to fill vacancy on Spokane County Commission

Gov. Jay Inslee on Wednesday tapped Mary Kuney to fill a vacancy on the Spokane County Commission, less than two weeks after the two sitting commissioners announced they could not …


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 12, 2017, 8:14 p.m.

Spokane County commissioners deadlock on appointment of third Republican colleague, give decision to Democratic governor

Deadlocked in a heated debate about who should fill a vacant seat on the Spokane County Commission, Republican commissioners voted Tuesday to let the Democratic governor make the selection.


Editorial: Kuney is best choice as commissioner

We hope Kuney still has the support of French, because it would appear as if Commissioner Kerns is in Chase’s corner. A Kerns-Chase power bloc on the commission is worrisome.


UPDATED: Fri., Sept. 8, 2017, 11:44 a.m.

Spokane County commissioners in stalemate over selection of third member

A rift in the Spokane County Republican Party has resulted in a stalemate between two county commissioners who are running out of time to choose a new colleague.


UPDATED: Tue., Aug. 15, 2017, 10:59 p.m.

Spokane County Commission reverses course on property tax vote

Spokane County voters won’t be asked whether they want to raise property taxes this year. The county commissioners, Al French and Josh Kerns, voted to rescind a tax proposal on …


UPDATED: Tue., Aug. 15, 2017, 1:05 p.m.

Spokane County leaders may abandon tax hike proposal, cut jail funds instead

The Spokane County commissioners may walk away from a proposal to raise property taxes to fix an estimated $10 million budget shortfall.


Chase, Kuney and Guarisco make shortlist to replace O’Quinn on Spokane County Commission

The Spokane County Republican Party convened Saturday in a church in Spokane Valley to pick three potential replacements for Shelly O’Quinn, who recently vacated a seat on the county commission …


UPDATED: Wed., July 19, 2017, 10:49 p.m.

Local leaders offer optimism following Avista’s announced sale to Hydro One

City, county and state elected officials said Wednesday they were heartened by the utility’s public message following the announced sale that it would maintain its commitment to partnerships in and …


Spokane County commissioners lift moratorium on outdoor pot grows

The Spokane County commissioners have lifted a moratorium on outdoor marijuana farms, but they replaced it with zoning rules that are significantly more restrictive to the pot industry.


UPDATED: Fri., June 16, 2017, 5:30 p.m.

Citing legislative duties, Shelly O’Quinn to stay another month on Spokane County Commission

Shelly O’Quinn was expected to resign from the Spokane County Commission this month to lead a major nonprofit organization, but the Legislature’s inability to craft a bipartisan budget has thrown …


Property valuations delayed because of staffing shortage in Spokane County Assessor’s Office

Property valuations will be more than four months late this year because of a staffing shortage in the Spokane County Assessor’s Office.


UPDATED: Tue., March 21, 2017, 11:11 p.m.

Spokane County aims for accountability in negotiations with jail medical care contractor

Spokane County plans to add measureable performance standards to its contract with NaphCare Inc., the Alabama company that provides medical care to county jail inmates.


Lift tax cap to maintain vital services

Legislators shouldn’t continue to shackle local governments that are, in many instances, performing state-prescribed duties. It’s time to allow budgeting to reflect reality.


County officials balance budget with property taxes former commissioner says should be devoted to roads

For the third year in a row, Spokane County officials are balancing the budget by diverting money that a former commissioner says should be spent on road improvements.


Spokane County, neighborhood groups sign sweeping settlement in land-use disputes

Spokane County agreed it will not expand the area where urban growth can occur for at least nine years without meeting certain benchmarks, while controversial boundaries drawn in 2013 will …


Inslee approves Spokane Tribe’s West Plains casino project

Gov. Jay Inslee gave the final approval on Tuesday for the Spokane Tribe’s casino project, clearing the way to a $400 million gaming and retail development on the West Plains. …


Neighbors cite roads, wildlife in opposition to proposed West Plains mining plan

Residents along Brooks Road, a lightly maintained gravel street on the West Plains, have spoken out against plans by Ron Calhoun to mine basalt on his 70-plus acres. Calhoun says …


Spokane County contracts with Alabama firm to provide jail medical services for $2.6 million

NaphCare, Inc., is buttressing the meager nursing staff at the aging Spokane County Jail.


Spokane County Commissioners revise public meeting rules for ‘administrative’ topics

Spokane County Commissioners gave themselves the option this week to move public hearings they believe won’t be well-attended to afternoons. A revision to county laws approved unanimously by the three …