Some candidates have challengers; others still unopposed

By Marcy Stamper

Anyone interested in running for political office has until the end of this week to file with the county auditor. Here is the status on candidate filings as of press time on Tuesday (May 13).
Okanogan County offices

Okanogan County commissioner Jim DeTro, who represents District 3, the northern part of the county, plans to run for a second four-year term and has no challengers yet.

Dave Womack, Okanogan County Public Utility District commissioner for District 1, who represents Omak and the southeastern part of the county, is up for re-election for a six-year term. Womack has indicated his intention to seek a third term but has not filed with the auditor yet. Two challengers have filed for the seat.

In addition, all elected department heads in the county are up for re-election—assessor Scott Furman, auditor Laurie Thomas, clerk Charleen Groomes, prosecuting attorney Karl Sloan, sheriff Frank Rogers and treasurer Leah Mc Cormack. Thus far, all but Sloan have filed for re-election and only Furman has a challenger.

Okanogan County district court judges Heidi Smith and Charles Short are both running again for four-year terms and have no challengers yet.

There is a new office on the ballot for the first time—a county coroner. By state law, any county where the population in the last census exceeds 40,000 must have an elected coroner. There are two candidates for coroner.

All precinct committee officers are also open for election.

Congressional offices

Five candidates have filed to fill the seat of retiring Fourth District Congressman Doc Hastings, a Republican, for a two-year term.

State offices

Representatives Cary Condotta and Brad Hawkins, both Republicans, represent the 12th District in the Legislature. Hawkins has filed and has no challenger yet. There are no filings yet for Condotta’s seat.

Representatives Shelly Short and Joel Kretz and state Sen. Brian Dansel, all Republicans, represent eastern Okanogan County in the 7th District. Short has filed and has no challenger yet. No one has filed for Kretz’s seat. Dansel has filed and has one challenger.

There are four state Supreme Court justices up for re-election and one judge in the Court of Appeals for this district.

All partisan races will be on the Aug. 5 primary. Nonpartisan offices—the judges and PUD commissioner—are in the primary only if more than two candidates have filed for the seat. For partisan offices, only residents of the candidate’s district vote, but all registered voters choose all candidates in the general election.

Interested candidates must file, either in person or on-line, by this Friday (May 16). Candidates must pay a filing fee of 1 percent of the annual salary. Offices with a salary of $1,000 or less pay a filing fee of $10, and offices with no salary have no filing fee.

For more information, call the county auditor at (509) 422-7240.