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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Sunday, September 15, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Stories tagged: Al French


Facing turnover, huge caseloads and complaints, Spokane County considers turning Public Defender’s Office into nonprofit

Spokane County appears poised to overturn decades of precedent and hand the responsibility of representing indigent suspects to lawyers who work for a nonprofit rather than the county. The move …


UPDATED: Wed., July 31, 2019, 10:59 p.m.

Spokane County Commissioners raise conservation fees

Spokane County taxpayers will soon see a $5 increase in conservation district fees, after the Spokane County Commissioners voted to increase their fees for the first time in 21 years.


UPDATED: Thu., July 18, 2019, 7:37 a.m.

Shawn Vestal: Building a bigger, better Spokane County Jail won’t necessarily solve overcrowding issue

Every release from the Spokane County Jail, from the least serious to the most, from allegation to conviction to dismissal, tells a different story. But we apply the same blunt …


UPDATED: Wed., July 10, 2019, 11:01 p.m.

STA board members clash over effort to research low-income transit pass

An effort to research the creation of a local transit pass for low-income people hit stiff resistance — but overcame it, at least for the time-being — at the most …


UPDATED: Tue., July 9, 2019, 9:45 p.m.

Commissioners pick Mike Sparber to continue running Spokane County’s jail facilities

Sparber has served as interim director of Spokane County Detention Services since February, when


UPDATED: Wed., June 12, 2019, 10:33 a.m.

Spokane Tribe will get a voice in transportation planning, a move that sparked controversy among Spokane officials

A new law tying state transportation funds to the inclusion of tribes on local transportation planning boards has its origins with the Spokane Tribe of Indians, but the effort to …


Buses still won’t have to pull over at bus stops in East Sprague business district, STA board decides

Buses will continue to stop in the lane of traffic on East Sprague Avenue, a victory for the transit agency and its plans to build out a “high performance transit” …


UPDATED: Wed., April 3, 2019, 10:25 p.m.

East Sprague business group wants to move fancy bus stops, but faces resistance

Eighteen months and $150,000 later, the glow has come off the fancy new bus stops on East Sprague Avenue for the city of Spokane.


UPDATED: Sat., March 16, 2019, 4:52 p.m.

Baumgartner and French disagree on pay raises for some Spokane County leaders; commissioners will receive 3 percent raises this year and next

Spokane County commissioners will receive a 6 percent raise divided over two years, an independent citizen salary commission decided last week.


With at least 2,000 new jobs on the horizon, West Plains poised for rapid growth

After decades as Spokane’s low-profile neighbor, the West Plains is suddenly in the spotlight for employment, population growth and commercial development. Rapid development, bringing at least 2,000 new jobs, will …


UPDATED: Wed., Feb. 27, 2019, 9:50 p.m.

Lawsuit challenges state law expanding Spokane County Commission from three to five members

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Spokane County Superior Court. Plaintiffs include the county as well as Commissioner Al French, former Commissioner John Roskelley and the Washington State Association of …


Annemarie Frohnoefer: New jail won’t solve societal problems

County Commissioner Al French has proposed building a new jail, saying, “this can has been kicked down the road for too many years,” before adding that he needs to know …


UPDATED: Tue., Dec. 11, 2018, 10:19 p.m.

Spokane County commissioners open union contract negotiations to the public

The move means members of the public and media will be able to witness the collective bargaining process in real time, even though state law allows that process to take …


UPDATED: Tue., Dec. 4, 2018, 2:41 p.m.

County approves $790 million budget without raising taxes

Spokane County commissioners unanimously approved a $790 million balanced budget for next year that largely avoids cuts to county departments while maintaining funding for public safety, infrastructure, parks and capital …


UPDATED: Thu., Nov. 29, 2018, 10:29 p.m.

Spokane County Commission again votes for 1 percent property tax increase

Spokane County Commissioners approved a 1 percent property tax increase to fund core county services, road construction and property acquisition for the Conservation Futures program.


County commissioners vote to sue state over commission expansion

Spokane County commissioners voted unanimously Wednesday to file a lawsuit to block expansion of the board from three members to five.


UPDATED: Tue., Nov. 27, 2018, 8:54 p.m.

French, Kuney sworn in as Spokane County commissioners

Spokane County Commissioners Al French and Mary Kuney took the oath of office Tuesday evening surrounded by family members, friends and county employees.


Spokane County Commissioners to take action on lawsuit aiming to block expansion of board

Spokane County commissioners will vote on whether to approve a lawsuit to block expansion of the board from three to five members – which would be filed on behalf of …


Integrated 911 center could go forward without city of Spokane

City of Spokane dispatchers may not be apart of a new region-wide communications center after City Council required its dispatchers to exclusively work with city public safety employees.


UPDATED: Wed., Nov. 7, 2018, 8:49 a.m.

Al French wins third term on Spokane County Commission

Incumbent Republican Al French is leading in the race against Democratic opponent Robbi Katherine Anthony to retain his seat on the Spokane County Board of Commissioners.


Amazon showcases progress of West Plains fulfillment center

Amazon showed off progress on its new West Plains fulfillment center Friday, which will be finished in fall 2019.


Vestal: Avista’s $200,000 for French, Kuney TV ads puts timing, Hydro One sale in spotlight

Avista Corp. gives a lot of money to local candidates. If it leans in any political direction, it is toward incumbency – toward those already in power. But Avista’s recent …


Spokane County Commission race takes negative turn with transgender comment by French

A race for Spokane County Commissioner turned contentious over the weekend when incumbent Al French reportedly called his challenger a “transgender, Bernie-loving, socialist, millennial.”


Editorial Endorsements: Kuney and French for Spokane County commission

Among the candidates running for Spokane County commissioner are a relatively new commissioner and an experienced one. Mary Kuney in District 2 and Al French in District 3 deserve election …


Avista spends $200,000 supporting county commissioners Kuney and French

Avista Corp. is spending heavily in the Spokane County commissioner races by dropping nearly $200,000 on re-election television advertisements for commissioners Mary Kuney and Al French. In Avista Corp.’s largest …


Spokane County prosecutors demand raises, complain of unfair bargaining practices

The union representing Spokane County’s deputy prosecutors has launched a public pressure campaign in hopes of rebooting contract negotiations and obtaining wage increases. Mediated negotiations stalled in August when the …


Spokane County commissioner candidates debate housing, public safety, economy

Spokane County Commissioner Al French and challenger Robbi Katherine Anthony traded viewpoints on public safety, housing, growth and economic development during a Thursday afternoon election debate at the Spokane Club.


UPDATED: Thu., Oct. 11, 2018, 9:47 a.m.

County Commissioner Al French faces challenge from political newcomer Robbi Katherine Anthony

If you want experience, Al French is probably your pick for Spokane County Commission.


Commissioners to host public meetings on Spokane County budget

The Spokane County commissioners will host a series of community meetings to inform the public and gather input as they craft the county’s budget for 2019.


Democrats see fresh energy in Spokane County primary; French shrugs off second-place finish

Democrats fared well in Spokane County races Tuesday, but can that momentum last in the general election?