|Shelly O’Quinn (R)||123,721||62.10%|
|Andrew Biviano (D)||75,517||37.90%|
* 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 Race
In the race for district 2 on the commission, Republican Shelly O’Quinn faces a challenge from Spokane attorney Andrew Biviano, a Democrat. The position represents the southeastern part of the county, including Spokane Valley and a corner of Spokane.
O’Quinn, elected to the commission in 2012, claims she has helped cut more than $1 million in annual spending by streamlining county functions. Biviano, a former federal prosecutor and mental health case manager, has made criminal justice reform a focus of his campaign.
In a recent debate, Biviano said the current commissioners have devoted too much of the county budget to top administrators. He noted the commissioners approved a large raise for the county CEO and created the position of chief operating officer; meanwhile, most county employees make significantly less than those in other counties. O’Quinn argued administrators are paid appropriately for their work.
Biviano also bemoaned a lack of “urgency” in the county’s efforts at criminal justice and mental health care reform. But O’Quinn said the county has made significant progress in those areas. Both said they would support housing projects for homeless people and low-income families.
- Spokane, WA
Education: Graduated from Central Valley High School. Earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Whitworth University and a master’s in business administration from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California.
Political experience: Elected to the Spokane County Commission in 2012. Ran unsuccessfully for state House of Representatives in 2010.
Work experience: Worked for Greater Spokane Inc., Habitat for Humanity and the Inland Northwest Community Foundation in Spokane. Led the George Nethercutt Foundation as executive director. Worked with World Vision developing small businesses in Honduras. Directed a mission for First United Methodist Church in Stuart, Florida.
Family: Divorced. Has two children.
- Spokane Valley, WA
Education: Graduated from St. George’s School in Spokane. Earned a bachelor’s degree in clinical child psychology from Yale University and a law degree from Gonzaga University.
Political experience: Never held elected office.
Work experience: Works as a plaintiff’s attorney for Paukert & Troppmann in Spokane. Previously worked as a mental -health counselor, case manager and court-appointed special advocate. Worked with mentally ill patients at Frontier Behavioral Health. Spent four years as a federal prosecutor in Spokane.
Family: Married. Has two children.
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In the race between Spokane County Commissioner Shelly O’Quinn and challenger Andrew Biviano, voters will choose between a business-oriented Republican and a Democratic attorney pushing for criminal justice reform.
Spokane Valley City Councilman Ed Pace, a self-proclaimed libertarian, constitutionalist and tea party Republican, said Democrat Andrew Biviano is exceedingly qualified for the commission job and “has a heart for justice.”
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O’Quinn is a strong defender of the collaboration between GSI, which represents business interests, and the county’s economic development efforts
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Spokane County agreed it will not expand the area where urban growth can occur for at least nine years without meeting certain benchmarks, while controversial boundaries drawn in 2013 will remain largely in place. The compromise marks the end of nearly a decade of legal wrangling, both sides said.
Gov. Jay Inslee gave the final approval on Tuesday for the Spokane Tribe’s casino project, clearing the way to a $400 million gaming and retail development on the West Plains. The project has been opposed by downtown business interests as well as Spokane County leaders who have argued that the construction of a large commercial area near Fairchild Air Force Base could make the military base susceptible to closure. But the base never took a formal position on the issue, and supporters of the casino stressed that the project would create well-paying jobs for tribal members and other and boost the local economy.
NaphCare, Inc., is buttressing the meager nursing staff at the aging Spokane County Jail.
Spokane County Commissioners gave themselves the option this week to move public hearings they believe won’t be well-attended to afternoons. A revision to county laws approved unanimously by the three Republican commissioners allows input on some topics to occur at sessions held at 2 p.m., when commissioners approve measures considered “routine.” This includes signing off on payroll, accepting grants and buying equipment. Commissioner Shelly O’Quinn said the change promotes “leaner” government by trimming costs and encouraging efficiency.
The 40-year-old private practice attorney said the three-member commission needs a strong, progressive voice that has been absent for the past few years.
Spokane County Commissioner Shelly O’Quinn said the county is saving between $1 million and $1.4 million annually as a result of lean management strategies implemented in the past few years at an address Friday in front of Greater Spokane Inc.
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A split Spokane County Commission has chosen Gerry Gemmill as the next chief executive for the county. Friends and supporters say he’ll make good use of contacts and a perspective from years in multiple government offices.