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Tyler Reeves mixes colored sprinkles and frosted animal cookies into ice cream to make Brain Freeze’s Circus ice cream. SR photo/Dan Pelle
Good Thursday morning, everyone. It's time for some highlights from today's Valley Voice. The election results are in for races in Spokane Valley, Latah, Rockford and Spokane County Fire District 9. In Spokane Valley incumbent Gary Schimmels will face challenger Ed Pace in November.
Reporter Pia Hallenberg stopped by the Brain Freeze Creamery in Spokane Valley, where you can buy flavors like salted caramel or Crayonberry Sorbet. They are always in search of new flavors to make. The maple bar bacon flavor sounds interesting.
Reporter Lisa Leinberger checked into the annual inspection process that all school buses must pass. Recently the Washington State Patrol was working its way through the Central Valley School District bus fleet. Any vehicle that carries children must pass inspection at least once a year.
There's also an interesting Vocal Point submitted by two Newman Lake residents addressed to whoever is having repeated parties on nearby land, leaving behind beer bottles and smoldering camp fires.
Attention procrastinators: Today is your last chance to vote in the primary election. Ballots must be postmarked by today or dropped off before 8 p.m. at any ballot drop box located at local libraries. Many people didn't get a ballot, which only includes races with more than three candidates. But there are contested races in Spokane Valley, East Valley School District, Latah, Rockford and Spokane County Fire District 9.
Apparently many people who have gotten a ballot haven't returned it. The small town of Latah is leading with way with 45 percent of ballots already returned. Rockford comes in second with a 28 percent return rate. Other return rates are in the teens: only 16 percent of ballots have been returned for the Spokane Valley City Council races. The numbers are 13 percent in the East Valley School District and 15 percent for Fire District 9.
The first vote tally will be released at 8 p.m. today. It usually takes two weeks to count ballots and certify the results.
Curt Buyser of Critter Control removes a captured yellow-bellied marmot near the Gonzaga University baseball field earlier this month. SR photo/Dan Pelle
I love Thursday for two reasons: it means it's nearly Friday and it's a Valley Voice day. Today's Voice section is packed with good stuff, so let's move on to some highlights. First up is our primary election coverage. Ballots are being mailed this week. I took a look at city council races in Rockford and Latah and a fire commissioner race in Spokane County Fire District 9. Reporter Lisa Leinberger has information on the candidates runnings for two East Valley School District board seats.
This week the Spokane Valley City Council took a look at several possible locations for a new City Hall. They favored buying the former Crescent building in the old University City Mall even though the building is significantly larger than what they would need for a combined city hall and police precinct. In other city news, the council is considering easing the sign code again to address the number and type of temporary signs and where they can be placed.
Reporter Pia Hallenberg has an interesting story on Curtis Buyser of Critter Control. He's the one you call when you have a skunk in the neighborhood, raccoons setting up house in your attic or marmots burrowing in the bushes.
Broadway Elementary School students extend hands for high-fives from from Swoop, the Eastern Washington University mascot during an assembly, May 17 in the school gym. SR photo/Dan Pelle
Well, here we are on a Tuesday that feels like a Monday. I've successfully moved my base of operations across the room and am all set to go, so let's take a look at our packed Saturday Valley Voice. Reporter Lisa Leinberger wrote a story on Broadway Elementary students, who won a contest to have the Eastern Washington University mascot Swoop visit their school. The entry was a last minute decision, but the kids enjoyed the visit.
Three draft designs for the expansion of Balfour Park were presented to the community during a recent public meeting. The majority of people seemed to favor the design that put an angled library on the southwest corner of the property at Sprague and Herarld. Spokane Valley is developing the site in partnership with the Spokane County Library District.
Filing week is over and there are some heated races coming up. Controversies in Latah and Rockford have brought out more than the usual number of candidates. Every Spokane Valley City Council seat will be contested this fall.
A preliminary design for the Appleway Trail was presented at a recent public meeting to get input on planned features. The city has no construction money for the project and is creating a design so the project will be ready to go. At a recent meeting the Spokane Valley City Council heard details on several proposed comprehensive plan amendments.
The town council in Rockford recently took the unusual step of cutting their own pay to save money. They are down to one full-time employee and other changes are likely in the future.
The Spokane County Elections Office is planning a special filing period next week for the 29 seats up for election across the county that didn't draw any takers during the June filing week. Many of those seats were for small town city councils and small fire districts, including several in the Spokane Valley area.
The vacant seats are on the Fairfield Town Council, Latah Town Council, Spangle Town Council, Waverly Town Council, Fire District 2 and Fire District 12. The full list of vacancies is in this story. The new filing period will be from 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16 to 4 p.m. Friday, Aug. 19. Those interested in running for office in November can file online or in person at the election office at 1033 W. Gardner. Call (509) 477-2320 for more information.
If you are still looking for something to do this weekend, there are a couple of options to consider. The City of Spokane Valley will host its first free outdoor summer movie showing in Mirabeau Park on Saturday. Earlier this year residents were able to vote on which movies they wanted shown. The animated PG film "Despicable Me" will show at 9:15 p.m. Saturday. The city's Parks and Recreation Department will have some activities in the park starting an hour before showtime, so head over there early and make a night of it.
Another option is taking a drive Saturday (the weather is supposed to be nice) down to Latah for the fifth annual "Cruzin the Palouse to Latah" car and truck show from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is sponsored by the Cruzin Inland Northwest Car Club, formerly known as the Cruzin Corvettes. In addition to classic cars and trucks there will also be carnival games, balloon fights, barbecue, raffles, a beer garden and more. The Latah Post Office is even getting in on the fun by offering Indianapolis 500 stamps and a special postmark. Latah is about 35 miles south of Spokane Valley on Highway 27.
So there are your choices, though you can do both if you're feeling ambitious.