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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 City Council dist. 3

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More input sought on Riverpoint bridge

Plans to build a pedestrian and bicycle bridge connecting the Riverpoint campus to the University District area along East Sprague Avenue were put on hold temporarily this week to allow more time for public comment. The city of Spokane is considering a $1.3 million agreement with Seattle-based KPFF Consulting Engineers to complete a design for the span over the BNSF railroad tracks bisecting the University District, an area of industrial buildings, mixed-use developments and college campuses on the south bank of the Spokane River. Proponents say the project would invite development and potentially revitalize an entryway into downtown Spokane, while Councilman Mike Fagan and some business owners worry the revenue stream for the project could dry up, ultimately leaving local taxpayers to foot a bill that area businesses and universities should pay.

City braces for budget cuts despite strong sales taxes

Spokane is collecting sales taxes like it hasn’t since before the recession. Even so, city officials are preparing for another multimillion-dollar deficit in 2014.

Hamilton’s maturity as doubtful as his residency

Mark Hamilton sure seems like a nice boy. Just a super … nice boy.

Suit tests whether candidate a resident

The race for a City Council seat representing northeast Spokane could soon be down to one. Two voters in Spokane’s northeast council district are suing Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton, claiming that candidate Mark Hamilton should not be allowed on the ballot because he was not a resident of the city for a year before officially entering the race last week.

Spokane City Council wants initiatives sent to voters

Voters should have a say on two controversial citizens’ initiatives, the Spokane City Council decided Monday. The 4-3 vote opposing lawsuits to stop votes in November was a victory for the two groups who collected enough signatures to force their measures onto the ballot.

Some politicians trust the voters only so far


City Council races draw more candidates

Two more candidates jumped into Spokane City Council races Thursday, ensuring primary races in two of the city’s three council districts. Laverne Biel, 60, the CEO at Access Unified Networks, filed Thursday for the south Spokane District 2 race.

Proposed initiatives in Spokane may get fight

The city of Spokane may have grounds to challenge two proposed charter amendments and seek court orders to keep them off the ballot, lawyers have told the Spokane City Council. Groups supporting the initiatives say that would be “a direct subversion of the democratic process,” but the Spokane Home Builders Association is urging the city to go to court.

Candidates must file for office by Friday

Candidates for local offices around Washington will officially enter their races this week as filing week begins this morning. On the ballot this year are council seats in cities and towns throughout Washington, as well as many mayoral slots. The city of Spokane has three openings – one for each council district – and the city of Spokane Valley has four at-large council seats on this year’s ballot. 

Vestal: Mike Fagan reaffirms principle over politics

Let the record show that Mike Fagan took the high road this week. He considered the contradiction inherent in something he was doing and issued a public statement acknowledging that he had been wrong.

Doug Clark: Council candidate’s residency dispute alarming

In that ongoing comedy called Spokane politics, a new star is rising. His name is Mark Hamilton.

Guilds’ School penny drive moving full-speed ahead

A local organization that helps young children with disabilities adapt to school life now has to adapt its own fundraising practices to comply with Spokane’s new panhandling laws. The Spokane Guilds’ School Foundation is holding its 17th-annual penny drive on Saturday, its first since the Spokane City Council voted 6-1 in August to outlaw panhandling in the downtown corridor.

Council considers blocking citizen initiatives


Council OKs spending $1.1 million on police equipment, training

Spokane police patrol cars may soon be equipped with cameras to record encounters with the public. The Spokane City Council last week agreed to spend $1.1 million from reserves to implement recommendations made by the Use of Force Commission earlier this year.

Spokane Council candidate’s residency doubts resurface

More doubts are being raised about a Spokane City Council candidate’s eligibility to hold the seat he’s seeking even as he continues to run an active campaign and collect contributions, including from a former state Supreme Court justice. Mark Hamilton, a pastor and real estate agent, says he’s been living since May at a dilapidated Spokane house he bought that month and declared his official home to meet city residency requirements, even though he voted outside the city in November. Now, utility records and the recollections of a handyman who helped Hamilton fix up the home at 217 E. Pacific Ave. raise additional questions about whether the candidate who still owns a home south of Spokane was actually living inside the city.

Groups hope to place initiatives on city ballot

Envision Spokane hopes the third time is a charm. The group was one of two that filed signatures this week with Spokane City Clerk Teri Pfister to place initiatives on the city’s November ballot. Both turned in significantly more signatures than needed to qualify – though they still need to be verified by the Spokane County Elections Office.

Police chief fills four of 13 exempt positions

Four of the 13 new public safety departments created by the Spokane City Council on Monday will soon have permanent leaders likely to keep the bigger paychecks most of them started getting in January. Police Chief Frank Straub said this week that he plans to ask the City Council soon to fill four of the six new departments created within the Spokane Police Department. Those four officials already are filling the roles in an acting capacity, he said.

Spokane County loss on land deal finalized