The nice thing about public records, when kept long enough, you collect all sorts of interesting knowledge you never thought would come in handy until the 10th sitting member of the U.S House of Representatives leaves office before completing their term.
The Office of Secretary of State historian, Patrick McDonald, compiled a list of Washington congressmen who never finished their term. The latest is Jay Inslee who resigned on March 30th to focus on his campaign for Governor.
The 5th congressional district is kind of interesting if you’re a fan of patterns. For 24 years in a row, not a single congressman finished his term.
It started in 1919 when John Stanley Webster was elected to serve in that position. He resigned in 1923 to be a U.S. District Court Judge for Eastern Washington. Samuel Billingsley Hill took over during a special election, but he resigned too in 1937 to become a judge on the U.S. Board of Tax Appeals. The next man to hold the position was Charles Henry Leavy who resigned in 1943 to become a judge on the U.S. District Court for Western Washington.
A new proposal is being shopped around to local elected officials. The proposal could build a new regional animal facility that voters turned down last November. After going back to the drawing board, Spokane County Commission Todd Mielke, says the proposal is cheaper by a few million.
The original concept was estimated to be about $15 million. When the proposal made the ballot last year, it was reduced to $9.3 million to convert an already existing building into what they’d need. That was voted down.
The new plan has been reduced to $4.5 million and would take over an existing building. Mielke says they have three choices, one at the vacant Harley Davidson building on East Trent, another in a now vacant mattress building north of Sprague and Fancher. Another on the east end of the Fairgrounds on Broadway that went on the market last week.
If approved by all the jurisdictions, this proposal doesn’t need voter approval because it’s below $6.5 million.
(Updated 1:11 p.m.) - I just spoke with Carolbelle Branch, the public information officer for the City of Spokane Valley. She outlined tonight’s city council meeting that might be worth looking into if you need a Tuesday evening activity at City Hall or the comforts of your home, online.
Tonight’s meeting is study session format only. No public comment will be taken.
Spokane County Commissioner Todd Mielke will be making a presentation on regional animal control. SCRAPS operations manager, Nicole Montano, who was pictured recently during the adoption update at their emergency adoption shelter, will be featured during the presentation. They're talking about a proposed animal shelter at three different locations: one at the vacant Harley Davidson building on East Trent, another in a now vacant mattress building north of Sprague and Fancher. Another on the east end of the Fairgrounds that went on the market last week. . Depending on purchase option, a dog park could be built as well.
City attorney, Cary Driskell, will be talking about city franchise purchases to establish standards for utilities operating in the right-away.
The City Council will also be talking about charitable donations in the right-away of roads. Branch says the city still allows for campaigns like Fill The Boot. The council will just be reviewing the ordinances already in place since more groups are using the roadway for these activities. They might discuss modifications if they’re needed.
Spokane County Libraries is hoping to purchase new property along Sprague Ave to build a new library, but they only want to buy 4-acres of the 8-acres. They’re hoping to form a joint-purchase agreement with the city so they can build a park on the other half of the property. There will only be discussion at this point on this topic.
Branch also added that three of their city employees were able to give out ALL of their business cards from last week’s City Hall at the Mall. Including herself, city attorney Cary Driskel ran out and so did Sue Passmore, the administrative assistant to the mayor.
A Spokane teacher was recognized in Olympia this week for his work teaching civic engagement, the foundation he says is what it means to be an American citizen.
Ned Fadeley teaches high school students at RiverCity Leadership Academy, part of West Valley School District. It’s a unique project-based school for students who aren’t in the mainstream high school system.
Students don’t go there to learn the process of government or the cabinet positions. They come there to learn civic thinking, something that goes beyond volunteerism. Fadaley says it teaches intellectual responsibility.
It’s that process that made him a finalist for the Civic Teacher of the Year award. Fadaley and his students traveled to Olympia to see him recognized. They met local elected officials like state Rep. Andy Billig and Timm Ormsby. They also met state Sen. Mike Padden who recognized him with a certificate for his work in civic education.
(Updated 11:10 a.m.) - Republican presidential candidate, Ron Paul, addressed a crowd of 2,577 in downtown Spokane on Friday night, hoping to earn their vote for the upcoming Washington State Republican caucus on March 3rd. The first to arrive lined up outside the convention center doors at 2:30 p.m. waiting for five hours until the doors finally opened. Crowds lined Spokane Falls Blvd. waving signs until for support of the candidate until the last minute.
Paul says he thought the crowd size was much better than four years ago, two or three times as many people as his previous visit.
He spoke to media after the rally saying the crowd verified one of his many talking points:
"I've always been told this part of the country and this state is very supportive of liberty. I think that was verified tonight," Paul said.
Paul has yet to win a state caucus, always placing in second or third, but he believes he's still in a good race right now.
"We believe we're doing a very good job even in the states that we don't come out on top on the popular votes," Paul said. "In other states we're going to do well for the delegate vote and that's what really counts for a campaign like this."
If Paul does not make the primary later this year, he says he does not have any intention to run as an independent.
North Idaho had a recent visit from Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum. This Friday, Spokane is getting their own visit from another candidate: Ron Paul.
He'll be in town for a rally at Spokane Convention Center at 7:30 p.m. It's not on the official campaign website yet, but it has been confirmed by the campaign's Eastern Washington regional director.
AP caucus results show Paul going back and forth between 2nd and 3rd place. The most recent caucus in Maine have Paul at 35.7% following candidate Mitt Romney at 39.2%.
Paul's arrival to Washington comes a month before the first of the party state caucuses. The Washington State Republican Party Caucus is scheduled for Saturday, March 3rd. The Washington State Democrats Caucus is scheduled for Sunday, April 15th. For more information about what the political party caucuses are, the Secretary of State's website has a couple helpful links.