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Monday, February 18, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Stories tagged: Al French


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.


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: 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 …


County commission rejects pay raises for Knezovich, Haskell

Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich will continue to earn less than his undersheriffs after county commissioners rejected a proposal to boost the salaries of the sheriff and prosecutor. Knezovich and …


Gerry Gemmill leaves alma mater for opportunity at Spokane County

A split Spokane County Commission has chosen Gerry Gemmill as the next chief executive for the county. Friends and supporters say he’ll make good use of contacts and a perspective …


UPDATED: Tue., Nov. 3, 2015, 10:39 p.m.

Spokane County voters turn down proposal to expand commission

Spokane County voters turned down by a wide margin a proposal to expand the three-member county commission. Just over 62 percent of voters said “no” to Spokane County Proposition 1.


UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 27, 2015, 10:14 p.m.

Spokane County CEO job offered to Gerry Gemmill in split vote

Gerry Gemmill, who previously worked for Spokane County and the City of Spokane, is favored by two Spokane County commissioners to become the county’s next CEO.


UPDATED: Mon., Oct. 26, 2015, 10:12 p.m.

Spokane County commissioners could choose new CEO Tuesday

Feuding commissioners are uncertain what will be the outcome of a meeting Tuesday to talk about a new Spokane County CEO. Commissioners could appoint a handpicked replacement for Marshal Farnell, …


Once-rejected Spokane County charter proposed again

The call for a charter to address representation issues in Spokane County government is nothing new.


UPDATED: Sat., Oct. 10, 2015, 11:35 p.m.

Spokane County Commission expansion proposal comes amid hostile divide on board

The proposal to expand the Spokane County Commission to five members is occurring in a contentious political climate that dates back at least a year.


Vestal: Rancor among county commissioners a by-product of a larger problem

The rancor that burst into the open this week among the three county commissioners seemed very much like high-stakes drama, or at least a very soapy opera: squabbling and bad …


Commissioners trade political, personal attacks in commission expansion talks

Public discussion of whether to support a ballot measure that would increase their ranks by two pitted Spokane County Commissioners against each other Tuesday night.


County commissioners publicly air rumors, trade political, personal attacks in commission expansion talks

Public discussion of whether to support a ballot measure that would increase their ranks by two pitted Spokane County Commissioners against each other Tuesday night.


UPDATED: Mon., Sept. 28, 2015, 8:45 p.m.

Commissioners remain at odds over Spokane County CEO job

After a public rebuke of Todd Mielke’s candidacy for Spokane County chief executive, Al French says he still wants a national search conducted by a headhunter. Mielke and Shelly O’Quinn …


Workers Bill of Rights proposal qualifies for Spokane ballot

Enough signatures have been collected in Spokane to put a proposed Workers Bill of Rights charter amendment on this November’s ballot. If passed, the newest measure put forth by Envision …


Spokane County Commission expansion will likely be on ballot this fall

Spokane County voters will likely decide whether to make the biggest representative change in local government since Washington became a state. Following brief public testimony Tuesday, county Commissioners Shelly O’Quinn …