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Wednesday, September 23, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Feb. 12, 2013

February 12 Special Election

Complete Coverage

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. 

Council considers blocking citizen initiatives

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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.

Council candidate’s residency questioned

A candidate for Spokane City Council who already has the backing of two other elected leaders may be ineligible to run. Mark Hamilton, the pastor of the former Spokane Christian Fellowship and a real estate broker for Soleil Real Estate, was registered to vote at an address outside city limits when he cast a ballot in November’s general election, which could complicate his efforts to assert he meets residency requirements.

Supermajority margin for tax hikes approved for Spokane

The next time the Spokane City Council considers a tax increase, it will take five of seven votes to pass. Most of the remaining ballots in Tuesday’s special election were counted Wednesday, and support for supermajority Proposition 2 increased, widening a close lead it had after Tuesday’s count.

Fraud suspected in initiative signatures

OLYMPIA – Three paid signature gatherers apparently committed extensive fraud while collecting support for two Washington initiatives, elections officials said Wednesday. The secretary of state’s office said many of the 8,000 signatures submitted by the collectors were invalid. The problematic filings were linked to a measure that would extend the time for initiative signature collection, and another proposal that would require companies to label genetically modified food.

Voters approve supermajority requirement

The Spokane City Council must approve tax increases with supermajority votes.

Spokane voters approve library tax

Spokane voters easily approved a City Charter amendment giving the police ombudsman more authority and a tax to ensure that branch libraries won’t close.

‘Supermajority’ proposition on tax hikes hotly contested

Of the three items Spokane voters will consider Tuesday, one has clearly sparked the most heated debate. Campaign groups have formed on each side of Proposition 2. Signs are up around the city and rhetoric is high.

Opponents of Prop 2 miss finance deadlines

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Stuckart, Waldref apologize for violations

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Library campaign reports $21,000

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Spokane campaign group fails to report funds

Spokane’s Feb. 12 special election has spawned three official campaign organizations, along with campaign reporting violations. It wasn’t until mid-December when the Spokane City Council decided to hold the Feb. 12 special election. That left a relatively short period to raise money and design strategies in support or opposition of the three propositions voters will decide on.

Ombudsman power in the mail for vote

The Spokane City Council has tried several times over the past two decades to craft a police oversight system with teeth. Now it’s the citizens’ turn.

Voters to decide whether 5-2 split needed on taxes

Spokane’s Proposition 2 is a way to ensure strong consensus on important issues or a strategy for a minority to seize control from the majority. That’s the debate among Spokane officials about the proposed requirement that tax increases earn at least five of seven votes on the City Council for approval instead of four.