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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Spokane Mayor

Related Coverage, Page 12

2011 Spokane budget limits layoffs

What started out as 71 city of Spokane layoffs has dwindled to only a couple. In September, Mayor Mary Verner announced that 71 employees would lose their job the day after Christmas to deal with the city’s $13.6 million budget shortfall.

Mayor to sign Spokane budget

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner said Tuesday that she will sign the 2011 budget and utility rate increases approved by the City Council this week. Verner opposed some of the changes the council made to her approved budget, including the elimination of a deputy fire chief position. The council also set water rates lower and wastewater rates higher than Verner proposed.

City flags to fly at half-staff for Cole

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner has ordered flags on city-owned buildings to be flown at half-staff on Thursday in honor of King Cole, president of Expo ’74.

Flags lowered in honor of Cole

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner has ordered flags on city-owned buildings to be flown at half-staff on Thursday in honor of King Cole, president of Expo ’74. Cole died Sunday at the age of 88.

Garbage, sewer bills to rise in ’11 in Spokane

Homeowners connected to Spokane’s sewer system will pay 17 percent more for service in 2011. The Spokane City Council voted 4-3 on Monday in favor of the new rate.

Deputy fire chief cut stirs furor

The Spokane City Council’s decision last week to cut a deputy fire chief position has angered administrators and Mayor Mary Verner. “It was not discussed with me. It was not discussed with the chief. It was completely unexpected,” Verner said. “What has been created here is an impossibility for getting the job done.”

Prosecutors consider mayor’s concessions request

Another city union is voting on a plan that would meet Mayor Mary Verner’s request for concessions. The Spokane Prosecutors Association is considering a proposal that would eliminate its scheduled 2 percent raise next year and to cover a higher amount of the cost of medical benefits, said acting Human Resources Director Erin Jacobson.

Extreme November weather has historic company

Getting There today is devoted to not getting there. The last two weeks have been among the worst that winter has thrown at the Inland Northwest in the past century, and it’s not even winter yet. That won’t come for two more weeks.

AMR agrees to settlement in overbilling case

American Medical Response, Spokane’s ambulance service provider, agreed to pay back just under $1 million, plus interest, received as a result of overbilling more than 12,000 Spokane residents over six years.

Melt, anticipated freeze give urgency to removal

Cold weather forecast for this weekend is threatening to turn Thursday’s thick, heavy mess of melting snow into rugged ridges of ice. Road crews in the Spokane and Coeur d’Alene areas were hustling to remove that traffic-stopping layer before lows drop to the teens and 20s on Saturday and Sunday.

City using contractors to help clear the streets

Spokane’s decision to call in private grader operators to help clear roads adds an extra financial burden in an already cash-strapped year. But officials say the need to maintain passable streets is one of the few good reasons to dip into reserves. The city put grader contracts out to bid this fall and is paying seven companies between $95 and $125 per hour for each of a dozen graders. That’s for use of the equipment and the staffing to operate them. The city also is using its plows and 10 of its own graders.

City, guild negotiating concessions

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner said her staff was continuing to meet late Thursday with the Spokane Police Guild on a proposed concession agreement to prevent at least some of the layoffs planned in the Spokane Police Department. Verner turned down a guild concession plan last week, but the union submitted a new one Wednesday.

Deal saves Spokane firefighting jobs

Spokane won’t lose a fire station and firefighters won’t face pink slips for 2011. The Spokane firefighters union voted last week to accept Mayor Mary Verner’s request to forgo raises next year and to pick up any increased costs of employee medical benefits above 4 percent in 2011.

Verner takes lead in longevity

In the decade since Spokane began electing strong mayors, none had served more than three years – until this week. Mayor Mary Verner didn’t even need to finish her term to become the city’s longest-serving strong mayor.

Deal with firefighters would preserve jobs

Spokane firefighters avoid layoffs under a tentative agreement accepted this week by Mayor Mary Verner. If the deal is approved by union members and City Council, Local 29 of the International Association of Fire Fighters would become the first of the city’s bargaining groups to strike a deal this year to save jobs.

Firefighters make concessions to save jobs

Spokane firefighters avoid layoffs under a tentative agreement accepted this week by Mayor Mary Verner. If the deal is approved by union members and City Council, Local 29 of the International Association of Fire Fighters would become the first of the city’s bargaining groups to strike a deal this year to save jobs.

City Council delays vote on tab tax

Motorists in Spokane soon could have to pay an extra $20 a year to license their vehicles. But a final decision on whether to impose the local tab tax was delayed Monday by the Spokane City Council to wait and see if city’s largest employee union will agree to budget-balancing concessions being sought by city leaders.

Verner urges residents to prepare for winter

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner kicked off the Inland Northwest snow season on Monday with a plea to residents to keep their sidewalks clear and cars out of the way of plow trucks. At the same time, National Weather Service forecasters said that the risk of snow and cold weather will increase as the week wears on.