Spokane County Commissioners Todd Mielke and Shelly O’Quinn voted Monday afternoon to place on the Nov. 3 general election ballot the opportunity for voters to decide on increasing the number of county commissioners from three to five.
In making the motion, O’Quinn said she was in favor of sending it to a vote, “The board’s only decision today is whether to place it on the ballot – the public will decide the outcome, and I am supportive of giving voters the opportunity to determine how they are represented at the county level.”
County commissioners are also allowed to discuss the ballot proposition and take testimony during a public hearing that may be scheduled in the next few months.
Mielke pointed to the fact that when Spokane County was created in 1889, the population was approximately 55,000 people. Today, the county is home to more than 490,000 residents and 14 municipal jurisdictions.
“It is past time for voters to consider expanding the board to better serve the public and provide greater representation,” Mielke said.
Commissioner Al French is in Washington, D.C., on county business and was unavailable to cast a vote on the issue.