County to be repaid over $100,000 for special election

OLYMPIA – Washington taxpayers will shell out nearly $800,000 for last year’s special election triggered by Gov. Jay Inslee’s decision to quit Congress to campaign.

Most of that money will go to reimburse Snohomish, King and Kitsap counties for their expenses tied to conducting the election to fill the final month of Inslee’s term in the 1st Congressional District.

State election officials notified the counties last week that the checks should be sent this month. Payment had been held up a few weeks because the funding is in the budget agreement signed June 30 by Inslee.

The final tally of $791,339.40 is less than the $1 million estimate former Secretary of State Sam Reed put forth when the election was announced.

Of the total, Snohomish County will receive $106,576.13, King County will get $529,057.02 and Kitsap County will collect $55,706.21. The amounts are tied to each county’s share of registered voters in the district at the time of the contest.

The state also pumped $100,000 into a voter education campaign consisting of radio, television and online ads explaining the reasons for the special election. The counties chipped in some money too.

This all began when Inslee, a Democrat, resigned his congressional seat March 20, 2012 to campaign full-time against Republican Rob McKenna. Inslee left with seven months remaining in his term.

His decision led to an oddball situation requiring two elections for one seat in two very different geographical regions.

Redistricting created new boundaries for congressional districts for the 2012 elections but federal rules required the special election be held within the old boundaries of the 1st District.

That meant for the special election ballots went to voters in an area stretching from south Snohomish County through King County and into Kitsap County. The area included Mukilteo, Edmonds, Lynnwood and part of Monroe.

While those voters picked someone to complete Inslee’s term, voters in the redrawn district chose a successor to serve a two-year term representing an area from Medina in King County to the Canadian border. The new boundaries include farmland and small towns of east Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties.

Democrat Suzan DelBene of Medina defeated Republican John Koster of Arlington in both contests.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@heraldnet.com

More in Local News

Inclusion super important to Monroe High senior

Sarah Reeves worked to make homecoming more representative of the student population.

This dental office devoted a day to free care for veterans

All Smiles Northwest in Everett was among businesses observing Freedom Day USA.

Man, 60, in critical condition after Bothell crash

Police believe the driver may have been speeding when he hit a rock wall.

30 homes evacuated after mudslide ruptures natural gas line

The slide also damaged a home in the 7300 block of N Meadowdale Road, near Lynnwood.

FBI operation arrests 3 linked to exploitation of 32 women

The sting focused on Everett and other cities in Snohomish, King, Pierce, Skagit and Spokane counties.

Man arrested in Monroe Walmart robbery; second suspect flees

The pair fled in a stolen Mitsubishi Lancer with a distinctive green spray paint job.

Fugitive convict, missing more than a year, surrenders

Charles Coggins, 60, turned himself in Monday. He could now spend up to 30 days behind bars.

Former homeless camp needs needles and garbage cleaned up

The Hand Up Project will lead a volunteer effort this weekend on wooded land south of Everett.

County Council postpones vote on conservation programs

A decision on funding agricultural and water-quality programs will come after the budget process.

Most Read