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November 6, 2013 at 9:32 AM
The Associated Press
Two candidates in separate races in the state are winning in Tuesday’s election despite being dead.
In Des Moines, John Rosentangle won 71 percent of the vote over write-in candidates in King County Water District 54. The 63-year-old died in August of an illness.
In Aberdeen, John Erak is leading Alan Richrod with 53 percent of the vote in a City Council race. The 81-year-old Erak was a former state representative who died in June shortly after announcing he was running to retain his seat on the council. His current lead is only 12 votes, and the results aren’t final.
Both men died after the filing period closed, and their names could not be removed from ballots.
October 25, 2013 at 12:08 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) — President Barack Obama will take part in a memorial service for former House Speaker Tom Foley next Tuesday at the Capitol building.
Foley was a 30-year veteran of the House who died last Friday at the age of 84.
Obama praised him as a “legend of the United States Congress” whose straightforward approach helped find common ground with both Republicans and his fellow Democrats.
The Washington state lawmaker served as speaker from 1989 to 1995. He was ambassador to Japan under President Bill Clinton.
April 26, 2013 at 10:04 AM
Metropolitan King County Council member Julia Patterson will not seek re-election, she said today.
Patterson is finishing up her third term representing the 5th council district, which is in South King County. Before that, she represented the 33rd legislative district in the House and Senate.
Patterson said that after 23 years in elected office, she wants to enjoy nature and her grandchildren.
“I intuit that it’s time,” she said. “I think there are other windows through which I need to view my life.”
Patterson helped incorporate the city of SeaTac and worked as a member of the Board of Health to require restaurants to put nutrition information on their menus.
Patterson said state Rep. Dave Upthegrove has expressed interest in replacing her.
“Nobody knows the community better than Dave Upthegrove,”she said. “I know he’s very well prepared and I hope he decides to run.”
Upthegrove said Friday he wasn’t prepared to state whether he would or wouldn’t run but planned to announce his decision early next week. “I’m likely to run. I’m not ready to pull the trigger yet,” he said.
April 15, 2013 at 1:02 PM
Although it’s six months down the road, King County Sheriff John Urquhart is getting ready for the November election.
He’s set to kick off his re-election campaign at a meet and greet Wednesday evening at the House of Hong in the Chinatown-International District.
He has lined up some big guns for his election roll out including King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg, Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes, and former U. S. Attorney John McKay.
Urquhart became sheriff in a special election last year to fill the final year of Sheriff Sue Rahr’s term. Rahr left to become director of the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission.
January 30, 2013 at 1:58 PM
By JONATHAN KAMINSKY
The Associated Press
OLYMPIA — The Washington state Senate on Wednesday passed its first bills of the 2013 legislative session, but put off a vote on a set of controversial measures intended to save businesses money by changing workers’ compensation rules.
Senate Republican Leader Mark Schoesler of Ritzville said the five bills dealing with workers’ compensation, which passed out of the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee Monday, will likely come to the floor soon.
“We heard the minority’s concerns about being rushed and we decided to respect them,” Schoesler said.
Senate Minority Leader Ed Murray, D-Seattle, said his caucus would not have stood in the way of a vote on the bills Wednesday but objected to an attempt to push action on them to Friday.
“We believe this needs to happen on a day when people will actually read about it in the newspaper,” Murray said.
Sen. Jim Hargrove, D-Hoquiam, a centrist, said he would have voted against all the bills had they come up Wednesday, but could envision revising that stance.
“Giving more time lets me figure out what is in there which means that potentially there would be one that I could vote for,” Hargrove said.
One of the measures, Senate Bill 5126, would reverse a recent Washington Supreme Court ruling that barred the state from compensating itself for benefits paid to an injured worker by taking a cut of the pain and suffering damages awarded to the worker suing a third party for his or her injury.
Another, Senate Bill 5124, would change how an injured worker’s benefits are calculated, in part by excluding the value of his or her health benefits.
Two of the bills, Senate Bills 5127 and 5128, would make “compromise-and-release” settlement agreements available to all workers – they are currently limited to those 55 and older — and make it easier for the state to approve such deals, respectively.
The bill lifting the age restriction on such deals has a companion bill in the House, House Bill 1097, sponsored by Rep. Chris Hurst, D-Enumclaw.
The proposed changes to the workers compensation system come in the wake of a raft of reforms passed in 2011 meant to rein in costs to a system widely viewed as overburdened.
The state’s Department of Labor and Industries recently proposed a series of tax increases, mostly aimed at employers, to raise $1.1 billion over the next decade in order to further shore up its reserves.
Among the five bills passed Wednesday with broad support were Senate Bill 5052, which would allocate an additional superior court judge to Whatcom County and Senate Bill 5021, which would change the name of the crime of rioting to that of criminal mischief.
Those bills will now be transferred to the House.
November 17, 2012 at 12:07 PM
The Associated Press
VANCOUVER, Wash. — Election officials routinely sorting through ballots in Clark County say they found more than a thousand uncounted votes.
The Vancouver Columbian reports the ballots had been scanned but not counted.
The discovery nearly doubles the votes that remain to be counted in an election that includes too races in the 17th District that have been too close to call.
As of Friday, Republican incumbent Don Benton was 96 votes ahead of Democrat Tim Probst in the 17th District Senate race. Meanwhile, 17th District House candidate Monica Stonier, a Democrat, led Republican Julie Olson by 100 votes.
Clark County Auditor Greg Kimsey says the problem was discovered when it became evident that the number of voters given credit for voting did not match the number of affidavit envelopes received.
November 10, 2012 at 5:01 PM
The Associated Press
There are ballots left to be counted, but backers of Washington’s charter school initiative have claimed victory.
With about 90 percent of ballots expected counted Saturday, Initiative 1240 was passing with 51 percent of the vote — a 41,689-vote gap. There are about 315,000 ballots received statewide that have not been tallied. The initiative was losing in King County, the state’s largest.
Washington voters have rejected the proposal four times since 1995.
If results hold, Washington would become the 42nd state to allow the public independent schools.
Supporters say the charter proposal would offer new choices for struggling kids and their families. Opponents say charters have a mixed track record in other states and they would take away money from regular public schools.
November 10, 2012 at 3:16 PM
Democrat Kathleen Drew has conceded in the race for secretary of state to Republican candidate Kim Wyman.
Wyman, former Thurston County auditor, had a narrow lead over Drew in the race to replace longtime incumbent Sam Reed, who is retiring as secretary of state. Reed had been in office since 2000.
In a statement, Drew said,
“Today, I called Kim Wyman to congratulate her on a hard fought victory and to concede the race. I know that she will carry forward Washington’s tradition of fair and impartial elections, and I am optimistic that she will work on measures to remove barriers and increase voter participation. I talked to her about the importance of fully funding the primary voters’ pamphlet at the state level, which had been a cornerstone of my campaign. I wish her all the best.
Drew is a former state senator from Issaquah.
Wyman campaigned on her experience conducting more than 80 elections at the county level. The Secretary of State’s main job is to oversee state and local elections. The office is also responsible for registering and licensing private corporations.
Wyman’s victory continues a nearly 50-year run during which the largely Democratic Washington has elected Republicans as Secretary of State. All the other statewide offices up for grabs this year went to Democrats.
November 6, 2012 at 12:05 PM
In our print edition this morning, we mistakenly said a voting drop box is located at city hall in Edmonds.
It is not. It’s at 650 Main St. in Edmonds, near the library.
October 15, 2012 at 11:09 AM
The Associated Press
TACOMA — Former state legislator R. Lorraine Wojahn died Saturday in Tacoma at the age of 92.
The News Tribune reports she suffered from congestive heart failure.
Wojahn served 32 years in the Washington House and Senate and is known for helping create the state Health Department.
She helped develop the state History Museum in Tacoma and the University of Washington Tacoma campus.
One of her famous bills required bacon packages to have a window in the back to make sure packers couldn’t hide the fat.
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