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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Proposal increases county commission from 3 people to 5

Voters may get a chance to decide whether Spokane County needs more than three commissioners to run local government, the number it’s had since Washington became a U.S. territory in 1854. Karen Kearney, a civic activist and unsuccessful Spokane City Council candidate, said she soon will ask county commissioners to schedule a vote on increasing the size of the board to five members.

Assessor, treasure shuffle deputies after county election

The Spokane County assessor’s and treasurer’s offices have new chief deputies as well as new elected department heads. Treasurer Rob Chase planned to retain Chief Deputy Treasurer Bob Wrigley, but was forced to hire a new deputy last month when county commissioners selected Wrigley for a new countywide budget director position.

Voters vent frustrations with GOP gains in county, state

Democrat Chris Marr conceded defeat Wednesday night in the record-breaking million-dollar battle for a Spokane County state Senate seat. Marr made up some ground in the second day of ballot counting against Republican Michael Baumgartner, but he said it was too little to make a difference.

State takes blame for election website crashes

Washington has killer election websites when they work. “There is no state in the country that has this sophisticated an election-night reporting system,” state Elections Director Nick Handy said.

Editorial: Let Dalton continue strong work as auditor

In his campaign for Spokane County auditor, Republican Leonard Christian has been loudly critical of incumbent Democrat Vicky Dalton’s oversight of elections. That’s only one of the auditor’s four major responsibility areas, but Christian says he emphasizes it because so many voters tell him they’re concerned about the security of their ballots. And he warns that there is tremendous potential for fraud in that arena.

Election staff breached security

A security breach in the Spokane County election office was precipitated by delivery of thousands of ballot envelopes with Auditor Vicky Dalton’s name on them. Republicans have complained that Dalton, a Democrat, is electioneering when she places her name on mail-in ballot envelopes.

Ballot envelopes disputed over auditor’s name, status

A Republican complaint to the state Public Disclosure Commission accuses Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton of electioneering by printing her name prominently on ballot envelopes. Dalton dismisses the complaint out of hand, but the Disclosure Commission doesn’t.

Spokane County auditor will heed critics’ ideas

Democratic Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton says she’ll implement some good ideas from her Republican critics. Dalton made the announcement Friday at a meeting of the county Canvassing Board, which is established by state law to review and certify elections.

Spokane County auditor race

Vicky Dalton, seeking a fourth four-year term as auditor, is challenged by Realtor Leonard Christian.

Panel clears assessor’s employee of leave complaint

An assessor’s office employee’s complaint that a co-worker took unreported leave was unfounded, according to a report The Spokesman-Review obtained Tuesday. The report, released under a public disclosure request, documents an investigation by a committee of Spokane County officials from outside the assessor’s office.

Primary costs multiplied by precinct committee officer races

Local taxpayers shelled out hundreds of thousands of dollars in the Aug. 17 primary to help political parties elect their precinct committee officers. The primary would have cost taxpayers in Spokane County only $42,314 if state law didn’t give political parties a free ride.

GOP questions ballot security in letter to county auditor

Republican Party leaders expressed concerns this week about the security of ballots mailed during the August primary to the Spokane County elections office. County party Chairwoman Cindy Zapotocky wrote county Auditor Vicky Dalton that a Republican observer saw uncovered trays of ballots being picked up at the downtown post office by a courier service contracted with the county. Zapotocky alleges that the courier made other stops with the ballots in his truck before dropping off the ballots at the elections office.

French hangs on for general election

A final vote count in last month’s primary election, to be certified today, didn’t turn around any races or trigger an automatic recount. Republican county commissioner candidate Al French retained a narrow lead Tuesday over Republican Jeff Holy and will advance to the Nov. 2 general election. French will face incumbent Democrat Bonnie Mager.

SNAP smooths process for helping with heating bills

Spokane County residents seeking help paying heating bills should encounter fewer hassles and less frustration this winter, according to SNAP, the agency that administers that service.

Auditor will no longer process passports

Passports will not be available through the Spokane County auditor’s office after Aug. 31. Auditor Vicky Dalton said it is no longer cost-effective for her licensing office to process the applications.

Mayoral race undecided

The results of this month’s Spokane County election were certified on Tuesday, but the counting isn’t over. Elections officials next week will recount by hand the votes cast in the race for Airway Heights mayor.