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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Spin Control

State treasurer to call it quits

OLYMPIA -- State Treasurer Jim McIntire will hang it up after two terms.

McIntire announced Wednesday morning he will not seek re-election, and retire when his current term is up at the end of 2016.

First elected in 2008 when the state was in the middle of a recession, McIntire said in a press release Washington has "come through a very rough economic time in good shape."

It kept a AA+ rating throughout the recession, saved $2 billion by selling bonds at low interest rates to build schools and roads and lowered the state debt limit. 

"Not campaigning during the coming year allows me to concentrate on protecting the Treasure and our credit rating, press hard for comprehensive education finance reforms and help lead the National Association of State Treasurers," he said in the announcement. 

Earlier this year, McIntire called for the state to cut its business and occupation tax and sales tax in exchange for instituting an income tax. Such a plan would raise the money necessary to bring the state into compliance with state Supreme Court orders to do a better job of paying for public schools, he argued.

Previous proposals for a state income tax have fallen flat with voters for nearly 80 years, although the elected officials who propose them don't necessarily suffer at the polls.

McIntire, a former five-term legislator, won his second race for the office with nearly 59 percent of the vote and had raised about $16,0000 for re-election, according to the Public Disclosure Commission; he had no announced opponent. He is the fourth statewide elected official expected to vacate his post: Public Schools Superintendent Randy Dorn and embattled State Auditor Troy Kelley have said they won't run. Lt. Gov. Brad Owen has filed paperwork for a re-election campaign fund with the PDC but reported no contributions. Three sitting legislators have announced campaigns -- a move that would be unlikely if they thought Owen was going to run for a sixth term.

Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981 and retired in 2021. He is currently the political and state government correspondent covering Washington state.

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