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City of Spokane Valley

General ELECTION: November 6th, 2018

The Progressive Voters Guide compiles the information you need to make informed decisions about the races on your ballot, based on your values. Vote in every race on your ballot! It's our right and our responsibility. Please share this guide with your friends and remember to vote by November 6!

Statewide Ballot Measures

Initiative #1631

Vote YES for Jobs and Clean Energy

YES
Initiative 1631 is our best opportunity to accelerate clean energy solutions and build healthier communities for everyone in Washington.

This initiative will charge our state’s largest corporate polluters a fee that will be used to create local jobs by investing in clean energy, healthy forests, and clean water. I-1631 is essential to pass a clean and healthy Washington on to future generations. It will create 40,000 jobs by investing in water and forestry projects, energy efficiency, and clean transportation. These investments are a practical first step to ensure clean air and clean water for everyone in Washington. These will look different in every community, from energy efficiency upgrades for our homes and businesses to keeping our forests healthy so they clean our air and investing in cleaner transportation options for more communities.

The oil industry is spending tens of millions of dollars to confuse voters about I-1631 so they can continue polluting for free and raking in record profits. We can't wait any longer to act. Vote YES on I-1631.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Campaign Information

Initiative #1634

Vote NO on I-1634

NO
Initiative 1634 would prevent cities and counties in Washington from passing new taxes on sugary beverages. Such taxes are aimed at discouraging people from buying sweetened drinks that have been linked to type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and tooth decay.

I-1634 is backed primarily by millions of dollars from a handful of big soda companies. It also has support from some labor unions that represent workers whose jobs could be impacted by soda taxes. The campaign’s highly deceptive ads focus on grocery taxes despite the fact that groceries have been exempt from sales taxes since 1977.

Progressive advocates oppose efforts like this to use state laws to prevent localities from taking action that’s right for their communities. In recent years, Republican legislators have sought to use similar legislation to reverse Seattle’s $15 minimum wage and progressive paid sick leave laws in Tacoma and Spokane.

We’re sympathetic to the concerns of union workers in the beverage industry and we agree that our tax system is upside-down and disproportionately hurts low-income families. However, we don’t think that preempting local legislation that taxes sugary drinks is the way to fix it.

Don’t be fooled by Big Soda’s misleading ads. Vote NO on I-1634.

Progressive Opponents

WA Federation of State Employees, The Stranger, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, Children’s Alliance, El Centro de La Raza

Campaign Information

Initiative #1639

Vote YES to Reduce Gun Violence

YES
Initiative 1639 is the most comprehensive gun violence prevention measure put forward in Washington state history. It's a commonsense initiative that will reduce gun violence and keep our schools and communities safe. I-1639 would raise the age to purchase semi-automatic assault rifles from 18 to 21 and require enhanced background checks and safety training for purchasing these particularly lethal weapons. It will also incentivize secure storage of all firearms by holding gun owners accountable if a child or other legally prohibited person uses their weapon to harm themselves or someone else.

Someone is killed with a gun in Washington state every 14 hours and more than 200,000 students have experienced gun violence at school since Columbine. Unfortunately, the gun lobby has prevented our elected officials from acting to prevent it, so we'll do it ourselves. Vote YES on I-1639 to keep our schools and communities safe.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Education: American Federation of Teachers - WA
General Progressive: Fuse WA
Reproductive Freedom: Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii
Social Justice: OneAmerica Votes
Media: The Stranger
Other: Washington Education Association

Campaign Information

Initiative #940

Vote YES for Police Accountability

YES
Last year, more people in Washington were killed in encounters with law enforcement than in 45 other states, and almost one-third of them were experiencing a mental health crisis. Initiative 940 would improve de-escalation, first aid, and mental health crisis training for law enforcement and help save lives.

Currently, officers are only required to receive eight hours of "crisis intervention training." Initiative 940 would ensure that every officer receives extensive training and continuing education in de-escalating potential confrontations. The primary goal is preventing tragedies in the first place, but when a tragedy does occur Initiative 940 would also create a fair and independent investigation process and bring our use of force standard in line with 27 other states.

Vote YES on Initiative 940 to improve training for law enforcement and help save lives.

Campaign Information

Statewide Advisory Ballot Measure #19

Maintain Funding for Oil Spill Prevention

MAINTAINED
A bipartisan group of legislators passed Engrossed Second Substitute Senate Bill 6269 to fund oil spill prevention and cleanup. The legislation directs the Department of Ecology to improve prevention for oil spills in Puget Sound, as well as around oil refineries, railroads, and pipelines. This bill was funded by a $0.05 tax per 42-gallon barrel of oil used by boats and marine terminals.

Because of a Tim Eyman initiative the Legislature is required to submit any bill it passes that closes tax loopholes or raises revenue to a non-binding advisory vote. Vote MAINTAINED on Advisory Vote 19.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Media: The Stranger

Federal

U.S. Senator

Maria Cantwell

Democrat
Maria Cantwell photo
Senator Maria Cantwell was first elected in 2000 and continues to represent our state's progressive values in our nation's capital. Sen. Cantwell has been a leader on a wide range of issues including reproductive rights, supporting the Children's Health Insurance Program, defending net neutrality, passing oil spill legislation to protect our water, working on clean energy policies, and many more.

Sen. Cantwell is opposed by Republican Susan Hutchison. Hutchison is a former news anchor and past chair of the state Republican Party. She ran for King County Executive in 2009 and lost by twenty points. Hutchison is well-known for being a party-line Republican and for her fierce defense of President Donald Trump, including calling fellow Republican Ted Cruz a "traitor" for not supporting the president's campaign.

Sen. Cantwell has been a tenacious advocate for the people of Washington state and is the best choice in this race.

Campaign Information

5th Congressional District

U.S. Representative, 5th Congressional District

Lisa Brown

Democrat
Lisa Brown photo
It’s time for new leadership in Congress, and that starts here in Eastern Washington with Lisa Brown.

Brown is a former state Senator and chancellor of Washington State University Spokane. Brown is committed to building an economy that works for all of us and ensuring access to quality, affordable health care for every family. She is focused on listening to the needs of our local communities, not lobbyists, campaign donors, and national political leaders. She will protect our local environment, supports reproductive rights, and supports comprehensive immigration reform that protects Dreamers.

Brown’s opponent, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, is a party-line member of the House Republican leadership who has lost touch with the people she is supposed to represent. Rep. McMorris Rodgers was an enthusiastic supporter of the Republicans’ $1.5 trillion tax giveaway to billionaires and corporations. Last year, Rep. McMorris Rodgers was the only member of the Washington state delegation to vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would have eliminated health care for 23 million Americans, including approximately 30,000 people in Eastern Washington.

Brown is the clear choice in this race because she is committed to putting working families first. Vote Lisa Brown for Congress in Washington's 5th Congressional District.

Campaign Information

4th Legislative District

State Representative, Position #1

Ted Cummings

Democrat
Ted Cummings photo
Democrat Ted Cummings is running to unseat Republican Representative Matt Shea from the 4th Legislative District House Position 1. As an active member of the United Steelworkers, Cummings is committed to fighting for working families in Olympia and creating job opportunities in rural communities. Currently, Cummings and his wife raise Angus cattle on their ranch in Chattaroy. Cummings is very active with the agricultural community and supports several Arabian horse and cattle groups. He hopes to restore the community’s trust in this position by responding to the concerns of every community member regardless of their political background.

Cummings faces a tough race against incumbent Republican Rep. Matt Shea, who is one of the most extreme conservatives in the Legislature. Rep. Shea has been cited for pulling an illegal handgun on a motorist, hosted secessionist campaign events, and has even filed legislation to have Eastern Washington secede to become the 51st state. Rep. Shea is also currently under investigation by the FBI for distributing a manifesto for religious war in the United States, calling for "the death of all non-Christian males in the U.S. if religious law is not upheld." Cummings is the best choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

General Progressive: Fuse WA
Economic Justice: Washington State Labor Council
Social Justice: WA State National Organization for Women PAC

Campaign Information

State Representative, Position #2

Mary May

Democrat
Mary May photo
City planner Mary May is running for 4th Legislative District House Position 2. May is a dedicated public servant who would bring more than 25 years of city planning and policy experience to the position. She is running to bolster unity among communities, protect the earned benefits of seniors and veterans, and to improve the quality of K-12 education in our public school system. Additionally, May is prioritizing policy solutions that strengthen environmental protections and keep health care affordable for working families.

May is challenging Republican Rep. Robert “Bob” McCaslin, who is aligned with far-right members of his party. Rep. McCaslin voted against measures to protect abortion access and practical environmental protections like this year’s Oil Spill Prevention Act. May is the progressive choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

General Progressive: Fuse WA
Economic Justice: Washington State Labor Council
Social Justice: Equal Rights Washington
Other: Spokane Education Association

Campaign Information

Spokane County

Spokane County Assessor

Tom Konis

Republican
Tom Konis photo
There are no progressive choices in this race. Republican Tom Konis has more than 24 years of direct experience working in the Spokane County Assessor's office. A former realtor, Konis is also an accredited residential and commercial appraiser. If elected, Konis wants to improve office efficiency through the use of technology, improve communications with county commissioners, increase employee training, and approach the responsibilities of the office using an equity lens to ensure that "everyone pays their fair share, no more but no less."

Konis is opposed by former state Representative Leonard Christian. Christian is a conservative real estate broker and a "Republican Party District Leader." While Konis has been endorsed by the local Republican Party, he has also earned the support of local labor unions and demonstrated a willingness to work with local progressive advocates. Tom Konis is the stronger choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Spokane Regional Labor Council AFL-CIO, AFSCME Labor Union 1553

Campaign Information

Spokane County Auditor

Vicky Dalton

Democrat
Vicky Dalton photo
Democrat Vicky Dalton has served Spokane County as auditor since 1999. As a certified public accountant and election administrator, Dalton believes in serving with integrity and works to improve the efficiency of county government through innovation, transparency, and accountability. Outside of her elected office, Dalton volunteers as a board member of the organization known as Spokane Neighborhood Action Partners (SNAP) and is a member of the Government Finance Officers Association. She is running unopposed for reelection and deserves your vote.

Campaign Information

Spokane County Clerk

Michael Kirk

Democrat
Michael Kirk photo
Democrat Michael Kirk is running for Spokane County Clerk after serving 15 years in the ministry. Kirk wants to bring a service-based approach to the county clerk’s office that focuses on building relationships with the community. He is running on a strong social justice platform and wants to use the office to reform the criminal justice system, protect local families from discrimination by the Trump administration, and support efforts to keep housing affordable. Kirk is not accepting corporate donations to his campaign to demonstrate his commitment to serving the community instead of campaign contributors.

Kirk is running against incumbent Republican Tim Fitzgerald. A retired Marine colonel, Fitzgerald emphasizes his military leadership skills that he brings to the clerk’s office. Fitzgerald’s platform is focused on finding efficiencies and implementing budgets.

Kirk is the progressive choice for Spokane County Clerk.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Spokane County Democrats

Campaign Information

Spokane County Prosecuting Attorney

No Good Choices Larry Haskell

Republican
Larry Haskell photo
First elected in 2014, Republican attorney Larry Haskell is running unopposed for the office of Spokane Prosecuting Attorney. While Haskell has strengthened the prosecuting attorney office's ability to handle domestic violence crimes and mental health issues, overall he has failed to represent interests of Spokane residents fairly and equitably. Most notably, Haskell requested a delay in prosecuting the Freeman High School shooting suspect Caleb Sharpe, citing technological mishap. Furthermore, in an interview he said "he wasn’t sure if [I-940] would have had an impact on any of the police shootings he’s investigated since leading the office," and he would support it if the voters passed it.

Haskell believes that "lowering property crime must be among the highest priorities in our community" and has worked hard to toughen penalties for repeat offenders and driving under the influence. Unfortunately, Haskell is running unopposed for reelection. Voters should write-in another candidate.

Spokane County Sheriff

No Good Choices Ozzie D. Knezovich

Non-Partisan
Ozzie D. Knezovich photo
There are no good choices in this race. In the aftermath of the shooting that left one student dead at Freeman High School last year in Spokane County, incumbent Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich blamed video games, people dressed in black, the media, gangs, and society for school shootings. Despite his office receiving an arsenal of weapons from the Department of Defense, Knezovich states that police militarization is a myth.

Sadly, Knezovich's opponent, Scott Maclay, who legally changed his name to DumpOzzie Dot Com, passed away after the primary election. Because it is too late for the county to remove his name from the ballot, if DumpOzzie Dot Com is posthumously elected a replacement may be selected by the county. Normally that process is done with nominees from the winning's candidate's preferred party, but DumpOzzie Dot Com is a member of the Independent Party, which does not have a branch in Spokane County according to The Spokesman-Review. If DumpOzzie Dot Com were to win, the issue may be decided post-election by the county after discussion with the state.

Spokane County Treasurer

David Green

Democrat
David Green photo
Certified public accountant David Green is running for Spokane County Treasurer. With 35 years of financial planning experience and local political activism, Green is uniquely qualified to serve in this position. Green is the chair of the 3rd Legislative District Democrats and was previously a board trustee of the Fox Theater and the Spokane Symphony Society.

Green faces a competitive race against former Republican state Senator Michael Baumgartner, who retired from the Senate to run for this seat. During his tenure, Baumgartner rightfully earned a reputation as one of the most extreme and bombastic members of the Legislature. From his anti-LGBTQ and anti-abortion stances to his constant attacks on working people, Baumgartner is out of step with the people of Spokane and unfit to serve as treasurer.

Green is the clear choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Spokane County Democrats, Spokane Regional Labor Council, AFL-CIO

Campaign Information

Spokane County Commission

Spokane County Commission, District #2

Mary Kuney

Republican
Mary Kuney photo
Spokane County Commissioner Mary Kuney is a moderate Republican who was appointed to the commission by Governor Jay Inslee in September of 2017. Kuney is a certified public accountant and the former Chief Deputy Auditor for Spokane County, a role in which she worked across county departments to streamline budgets and improve efficiencies.

Kuney is being challenged by Spokane County Treasurer Rob Chase. Chase is a far-right Republican who is running on an anti-tax platform and has been endorsed by extreme Republicans like Rep. Matt Shea.

While we don’t agree with Kuney on every issue, we believe she’s clearly the better choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Spokane Regional Labor Council, Spokane County Fire District 8 Local 3711

Campaign Information

Spokane County Commission, District #3

Robbi Katherine Anthony

Democrat
Robbi Katherine Anthony photo
Robbi Katherine Anthony is a trans woman and self-described progressive. Her campaign is prioritizing a data-driven approach to decision-making, repairing the $10 million county budget shortfall, and ensuring that the county is using up-to-date technology. She believes diversity boosts economic growth and is devoted to making Spokane County more inclusive.

Her opponent, Al French, is a conservative developer with a combative style and history of ethics complaints. He has alienated local cities by promoting aggressive urban sprawl and caused them to opt out of a regional garbage system that has cost the county millions in revenue. Anthony is the best choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

General Progressive: Fuse WA

Campaign Information

Judicial Races

The Progressive Voters Guide may skip recommendations for unopposed judicial races.

State Supreme Court

State Supreme Court Justice, Position #2

Susan Owens

Susan Owens photo
First elected in 2000, Supreme Court Justice Susan Justice Owens brings more 40 years of legal experience to Washington's Supreme Court. Prior to serving on the court, Justice Owens served nineteen years as a District Court Judge in Western Clallam County. Justice Owens has been a leader in the judicial community on addressing the impacts of domestic violence on children. Nationally, Justice Owens is a judicial trainer on this topic and participated in the writing of the Northwest Tribal Judges Domestic Violence Manual. Justice Owens is running unopposed for re-election and has earned your support.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Reproductive Freedom: NARAL Pro-Choice Washington
Economic Justice: Washington State Labor Council

Campaign Information

State Supreme Court Justice, Position #8

Steve Gonzalez

 Steve Gonzalez  photo
Supreme Court Justice Steve Gonzalez has earned national recognition for his judicial expertise and work to increase access to the judicial system. Before serving on the Supreme Court, Justice Gonzalez served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney and on the King County Superior Court for more than 10 years hearing criminal, juvenile, and family law cases. Justice Gonzalez is devoted to working for the people of Washington and serves as a board member for the Washington Leadership Institute, an organization that supports emerging community leaders from diverse backgrounds. As one of the few multi-lingual justices, he chairs the Interpreter Commission. Justice Gonzalez is rated "Exceptionally Well Qualified" by 10 independent bar associations in Washington state.

Gonzalez is being challenged by Bellevue-based attorney Nathan Choi, who ran unsuccessfully for a judicial seat on the Court of Appeals in 2016. Since then, Choi has faced numerous ethical controversies. In 2017, the King County Bar Association formally reprimanded Choi for violating KCBA's fair campaign practices guidelines by releasing misleading campaign materials and failing to follow state candidate rules. In February of this year, Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson formally filed a lawsuit against Nathan Choi in a Thurston County Court. The case is still open.

Justice Steve Gonzalez is the best choice for Supreme Court Justice Position 8.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Campaign Information

State Supreme Court Justice, Position #9

Sheryl Gordon McCloud

 Sheryl Gordon McCloud photo
Washington Supreme Court Justice Sheryl Gordon McCloud has been a fierce defender of constitutional rights and has written the decision in several consequential court cases. Prior to serving on the Supreme Court, she worked as an accomplished appellate court attorney for nearly three decades and was a founding member of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association. Her strong judicial track record has earned a rating of "Exceptionally Well Qualified" by 10 independent state bar associations, including Washington Women Lawyers and the newly-minted Veterans Bar Association.

Justice McCloud in running unopposed for Position 9 and deserves your vote.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Campaign Information

Court of Appeals, Division Three, District Two

Court of Appeals, Division Three, District One: Judge, Position #1

Laurel Siddoway

Laurel Siddoway photo
Judge Laurel Siddoway is Washington’s presiding Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals. First elected in 2010, Judge Siddoway is a non-partisan judge who previously worked as a private attorney representing both private and public clients in Eastern Washington for 30 years. Outside of the courtroom, Judge Siddoway is a trustee for the Spokane Symphony and was a founding member of the Rockwood Neighborhood Association. Her reputation for judicial independence, extensive expertise, and fairness earned her the unanimous endorsement of members of the state Supreme Court. Judge Siddoway has earned another term.

Campaign Information

Spokane County Superior Court

Spokane County Superior Court Judge, Position #10

There are two qualified candidates in this race: D.C. Cronin and Shelley Szambelan. We believe Cronin is the better choice because of his strong background in civil rights and advocacy for racial justice.

DC Cronin

DC Cronin photo
Dennis "DC" Cronin is a local attorney who is running to challenge the status quo of the judicial system. Cronin has served as a Spokane County Superior Court Commissioner Pro Tem (substitute) for ten years and has practiced law since 1984. He is strongly committed to ensuring that all families and individuals have the right to "equitable access to the justice system." Cronin has earned strong support from groups based in communities of color for his history of work on civil rights.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Social Justice: WA State National Organization for Women PAC
Bar Association Ratings:
Joint Asian Judicial Evaluation Committee: Exceptionally Well Qualified
Latina/Latino Bar Association: Exceptionally Well Qualified
Loren Miller Bar Association: Exceptionally Well Qualified
QLaw: Exceptionally Well Qualified


Other: Spokane County Democrats, Aerospace Machinists Industrial District Lodge 751, Washington State National Organization of Women (NOW), Northeast Washington/Northern Idaho Building and Construction Trades Council, Spokane Community Against Racism (SCAR)

Campaign Information

Shelley Szambelan

Shelley Szambelan photo
Appointed earlier this year by Gov. Jay Inslee, Judge Shelley Szambelan is running to retain her position on the Spokane County Superior Court. Previously, Judge Szambelan served as a judge on the Spokane Municipal Court for nine years and worked as an assistant city attorney and prosecutor for the City of Spokane. She has 25 years of legal experience and volunteers with the Washington State Minority and Justice Commission’s Youth & Justice Forum and Habitat for Humanity-Spokane.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Bar Association Ratings:
Washington Women Lawyers: "Exceptionally Well Qualified" Spokane Bar Association: "Exceptionally Well Qualified/Well Qualified"

Other: Spokane Regional Labor Council, Washington State Young Democrats, 6th Legislative District Democrats, United Food & Commercial Workers Union Local 1439

Campaign Information

Spokane County District Court

Spokane County District Court, Judge, Position #1

Patrick Johnson

Patrick Johnson photo
There are no progressive candidates in this race for Spokane County District Court Judge, Position 1. Patrick Johnson is a somewhat conservative attorney who has served as a Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor for 20 years and argued more than 100 felony cases in his career. Johnson also serves as Senior Defense Counsel in the U.S. Army Reserves and has more than 25 years of military service under his belt. He has been a strong advocate for the alternative veterans court and wants to continue improving court services offered to veterans. He is also the Vice President of Local 1553PA and has earned the support of several local unions.

Johnson is opposed by attorney Randy Brandt, who last ran for a judicial seat in 2014. Through Brandt has extensive legal experience; he is running a misleading campaign by using old campaign signs that say "Judge" on them despite the fact that Mr. Brandt is not currently a judge. Brandt has also struggled to file his campaign finance disclosure reports correctly. Johnson is the stronger choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Spokane Regional Labor Council; United Food-Commercial Workers Union Local 1439

Campaign Information

Spokane School District No. 81

Spokane School Board School District Proposition #1

Say YES to Better Schools for Our Children

YES
The Spokane School District is proposing a $495.3 million bond to reduce overcrowding and improve schools. It will be used to build three new middle schools and to make practical structural improvements to four other schools in the Spokane School District. In addition, it will finance the construction of a cafeteria at Lewis & Clark High School and the acquisition of new technology. Approving this proposal would maintain the current tax rate.

Our schools are the foundation of our children's futures. Vote to reduce overcrowding and approve Proposition No. 1 for Spokane schools.