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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Wilhite seeking seat in Washington House

Diana Wilhite, a Spokane Valley councilwoman and former mayor, will run for an open state House of Representatives seat this fall.

Wilhite, 62, a partner with her husband in Safeguard Business Printing and Promotional Products, said Tuesday she’ll run for the spot being vacated by state Rep. Lynn Schindler, who is retiring.

A former substitute social studies teacher and a one-time Spokane County Republican Party chairwoman, Wilhite said she wants to bring a business perspective to legislative discussions.

“The Legislature passes things that are not conducive to good business,” she said.

Among those are a state Family Leave Act that has more benefits than the federal law, Wilhite said. She believes the state law is too expensive and is unnecessary because businesses will accommodate employees with family emergencies, because good replacements are hard to find and expensive to train.

Wilhite is one of the original members of the Spokane Valley City Council, elected in 2002 after the city incorporated. She was named mayor by other council members from 2005 through 2007, and she remains on the council.

She will run as a Republican in the 4th Legislative District. Matthew Shea, a private attorney, has also announced he will seek the Republican nomination for the seat.

The district, which votes heavily Republican in most elections, covers Spokane Valley and the rural areas north to the county border.

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