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KHQ Local News 2017 Election Night coverage, including reporting from Spokesman-Review reporters Kip Hill and Jim Camden.
Only about 17 percent of ballots across the state, and a slightly better though still dismal 22 percent of ballots in Spokane County, had been turned in.
A few months ago, it seemed no one wanted to be the mayor of Latah or a member of the Town Council.
The general election ballot full of candidates for city offices as well as some school board and a few legislative positions.
Derek Knecht has said he wants to be the mayor of Fairfield to “bring back honesty, integrity, accountability and transparency.” Anonymously, others have insinuated that he’s running with “vengeance in mind.”
Spin Control: Holding on to that ballot to get more info on candidates? We’ve got places you can look
For voters who haven’t cast ballots – which is to say, most of them – here’s some help in finding information about the candidates and issues in the 2017 general election.
For the first time in at least a decade, spending by outside groups in this year’s City Council races reached all corners of the city. Through Friday, more than $372,000 had been raised for the three of the contests that will be decided next week, with 1 in 4 of those dollars coming from a group working independently of the candidates.
Incumbent East Valley School Board member Justin Voelker says his experience on the board, as a hospital executive and as a parent makes him the best choice in the November election.
Council candidate Kate Burke’s story of sexual harassment prompts apology from political ally Ben Stuckart
The candidate for Spokane’s City Council seat in the northeast said she accepts the council president’s invitation to work on sexual harassment policies at City Hall, after she was critical of his response to her own story of harassment by former City Councilman Richard Rush. Burke said she’s having to unfairly answer questions about the timing of her story, given the approaching election.
Of the several differences between the two candidates for the East Valley School Board, district 4, the most apparent is age. Incumbent school board member Fred Helms is 77 years old, but his challenger, Emily Provencio, is 18 years old.
A biology professor looks to bring her water quality knowledge to the Whitworth Water District Commission, position 1, as she runs against an incumbent who wants to localize decisions on water management. Incumbent Rick Koller said he has concerns over a state Supreme Court ruling that requires counties to ensure new wells won’t have a negative impact on water availability. He agrees with the concept, but said in practice it has become a “bureaucratic mess,” carried out by “people who have never drilled a well before.”
Spokane City Councilman Breean Beggs was part of a legal defense team that earned a $1.3 million judgment against a Whatcom County prosecutor targeting a bookstore for its sale of a magazine issue focusing on rape in 1995. The chair of the Spokane County Republicans, with support from several prominent conservatives on social media, is accusing Beggs’ involvement as a defense of hate speech, despite clear court victories indicating authorities were attempting to violate Constitutional rights.
Incumbent Medical Lake councilwoman stands by sheriff’s contract; challenger open to forming police department
The two candidates for position 2 on the Medical Lake City Council agree the city’s fire department needs paid staff, but they disagree on how to provide law enforcement to the town. Incumbent Elizabeth Rosenbeck, 54, aims to retain her seat on City Council against candidate John Merrick. She was appointed to the council in 2016 to fill the late Howard Jorgensen’s position.
Theodore Olson and Gary Plumlee are running for Medical Lake City Council, Position 5.
Both candidates for position 4 on the Medical Lake City Council say more study is needed before abandoning the city’s partnership with the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office. Don Kennedy, a resident of 21 years and retired attorney, said that as debate continues about a possible end to Medical Lake’s contract with the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, his main objective is maintaining an economically responsible budget.
The northwest Spokane pizzeria owner said he’s trying to put a positive spin on a campaign ad he called “slanderous and uncalled-for.”
Both candidates for a vacant Whitworth Water District Commission seat tout their backgrounds in construction and utilities as evidence they can serve a district entering a period of increased demand for coverage and new management. Dave Tewel, one of the candidates, said a big challenge the district faces is more requests for water from areas that are remote, but still within the district’s bounds. He said the necessary infrastructure for this expansion would drive rates up.
The race for Spokane Valley City Council Position 2 is heating up, and so is the rhetoric between its two candidates.
Three advisory measures sit atop the ballot for Washington voters.
For Spokane Valley Fire Board Commissioner Patrick Burch and challenger Stan Chalich, serving the community and ensuring the fire department’s financial longevity is a common goal. Burch, 54, was appointed to the fire board of commissioners in July 2016. Burch has more than nine years of community service experience within the fire department. He served on the Community Emergency Response Team and was a team leader with the Fire Corps, a volunteer group that provides firefighter support services.