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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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City of Spokane, Proposition 1

Election Results

Option Votes Pct
Yes 20,285 80.57%
No 4,893 19.43%

* Race percentages are calculated with data from the Secretary of State's Office, which omits write-in votes from its calculations when there are too few to affect the outcome. The Spokane County Auditor's Office may have slightly different percentages than are reflected here because its figures include any write-in votes.

About The Measure

This ballot measure allowing Spokane’s Salary Review Commission to set the mayor’s pay is the culmination of a heated discussion between Mayor David Condon and the Spokane City Council after the mayor’s 2015 budget proposal included a nearly $7,000 pay raise for his position.

Currently, the city charter states that the mayor must be the highest-paid employee at City Hall other than the city administrator, wording that was reaffirmed by voters in 2011. This ballot measure would again amend the city charter.

In 2014, Mayor David Condon was paid $172,000. His pay was set to increase to nearly $180,000 this year, matching that of police Chief Frank Straub, the employee with the highest base salary at City Hall in 2015. The pay increase was part of Condon’s 2015 budget proposal, which he argued was in keeping with the city charter. After public uproar and pressure from City Council members, the mayor said he wouldn’t take the raise but demanded a long-term solution, leading to this ballot measure.

The salary commission currently sets the pay of City Council members, the City Council president and municipal judges, who are all elected.

The salary commission has five positions, which must be filled by Spokane residents who are registered to vote. At least one person from each of the three council districts must be on the commission. Commission members are nominated by the mayor and appointed by the council. Their terms last four years and are staggered so the members aren’t replaced all at one time. The positions are unpaid.

According to city law, the members must have experience in “finance, business management or personnel management” or have other experience that can help determine the pay of elected officials. No employee or official of City Hall can sit on the commission, nor can anyone in their immediate family.

Two of the positions, one representing the south part of Spokane and the other the northwest part of the city, currently are vacant.

Bob Beaumier, a former city attorney and current chairman of the state’s Citizen Committee on Pipeline Safety, is an at-large member whose term ends in 2017.

Alexander Scott, a business consultant who owns Quokka Consulting with business interests in Australia and West Africa, is also an at-large member. His term runs through 2017.

Dick Barrett, a former Republican state legislator, is on the commission representing the northeast district of Spokane. Barrett’s terms run through 2015.

Complete Coverage

Spokane candidates on the lack of a city planning director

The city has been without a planning director since Scott Chesney was ousted last November.

Doug Clark: As police department falters, it needs a real leader

Recent turmoil in the Spokane Police Department doesn’t sound like the new-and-improved department that Mayor David Condon’s been bragging about.

Does Spokane have a sprawl problem? Spokane candidates speak

Yes. No. Depends who you ask, like we just did for you.

Candidate fact check: Has crime really fallen under the Condon administration?

With three days to vote, the wave of campaign literature continues unabated. But how true are the claims made by these mailers and door-hangers?

Spokane candidates talk about the city’s spokesmen and spokeswomen

Their answers vary, some say just two, others say it’s up to the mayor.

Mayor’s top staff rebut claims of dishonesty during ouster of former Police Chief Frank Straub

Theresa Sanders and Brian Coddington shot back this week against claims they were dishonest during Frank Straub’s ouster, saying an ethics complaint is politically motivated and frivolous.

Candidates speak about Spokane’s lawsuit against agrochemical giant Monsanto

In August, the city of Spokane filed a lawsuit against the international agrochemical giant Monsanto, alleging that the company sold chemicals for decades that it knew were a danger to human and environmental health.

Condon and Lichty on the Mayor Vs. City Council

Condon says things are pretty good. Lichty says not so much.

Spokane candidates on the Mayor Vs. the City Council

Everything’s golden, or This. Means. War.

Spokane candidates on their political heroes

Even politicians have heroes.

Condon says city is thriving; Lichty points to recent police controversy

Ronald Reagan, a political hero of Spokane Mayor David Condon, famously asked voters in 1980, “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?” The answer that year was a resounding no, and Reagan entered the White House on a white horse.

Shawn Vestal: Otto Zehm case still a stain on culture of Spokane’s police department

Two Spokane police officers – a long-serving captain and a long-serving lieutenant – took a stand last year for honesty and credibility in the department. Or maybe that should be “honesty” and “credibility.”

Spokane mayoral candidate Lichty files ethics complaint in police chief’s ouster

Mayoral candidate Shar Lichty has filed an ethics complaint against two city employees who gave false information to the media, including the Spokesman-Review, in the lead-up to Frank Straub’s ouster from the Spokane Police Department.

Spokane mayoral candidate Shar Lichty files ethics complaint in ex-police Chief Frank Straub’s ouster

Mayoral candidate Shar Lichty has filed an ethics complaint against two city employees who gave false information to the media, including the Spokesman-Review, in the lead-up to Frank Straub’s ouster from the Spokane Police Department.

Doug Clark: Condon, not taxpayers, should cover cost of Straub fiasco

So ousted Spokane Police Chief Frank Straub thinks the city should pay him 4 million bucks to soothe his bruised and battered ego. All right. I don’t see a problem with that.

In race for Spokane City Council, Stratton and Verduin say they’re not proxies for Stuckart and Condon

Incumbent Spokane Councilwoman Karen Stratton is backed the council president. Her opponent, Evan Verduin, is supported by the mayor.

Officials gave false details leading up to chief’s resignation

In the weeks, days and hours leading to the ouster of Spokane’s police chief, city officials provided incorrect information to the public about growing concerns among police employees about Chief Frank Straub’s leadership. Even Tuesday’s news release publicly announcing Straub had resigned said his departure was “to pursue new opportunities and be closer to family.” The fact that he had been forced out because of what some in the department considered brash and unprofessional management was not disclosed until Mayor David Condon suggested so in a news conference soon after the news release was distributed.

With Spokane police chief Frank Straub out, reforms must continue

Former Police Chief Frank Straub described his management style as direct, honest and blunt, but denied Wednesday that he had been abusive or obscene while managing sometimes difficult changes in the Spokane Police Department. Straub also said he believes a wide-ranging series of reforms and new initiatives – including federal oversight of the department’s practices and a shift toward a more precinct-oriented model of community policing – are established firmly enough that his successor can move forward with them.

No police chief search in works; Dobrow named as interim

City leaders have no plans to begin a search for a permanent police chief after the Tuesday ouster of Frank Straub, a move police reform advocates say is a mistake. Assistant Chief Rick Dobrow, a 21-year veteran of the Spokane Police Department, was appointed interim chief Tuesday. Though he doesn’t meet the minimum qualifications for the chief job, city officials say he’s well-positioned to rebuild trust with officers after Straub’s divisive management.