Filings are finished, the primary is next

The filing deadline for the Aug. 18 primary came and went June 5.

Based on unofficial filings listed by King County, of 10 potential local races, voters will decide only three primary contests.

For a combined total of six expiring seats on the Bothell and Kenmore city councils, as well as the Northshore School District Board of Directors, only two candidates filed to run in each of those contests. Candidates in those two-person races simply will skip the primary and move on to the November general election.

Barring some unforeseen circumstance, for two newcomers to local elected offices, even the general election should not be a hurdle. In both instances, the newcomers were the only candidates to file in their respective races and in all likelihood they will breeze into office unopposed.

In Kenmore, resident and former City Council member Bob Hensel was the only person to file for City Council Position No. 4, a seat being vacated by Councilman Randy Eastwood.

Neither Hensel nor Eastwood responded to requests for comment. Hensel previously served four years as a local legislator.

The other unopposed candidate should gain an easy seat on the Northshore school board. Kirkland resident Sandy R. Hayes was the only person to file for the fourth slot on the board. The seat is currently held by board member Gene Hawkridge, who announced he was not running for re-election in order to spend more time with his family.

Hayes could not be reached for comment, but a spokesperson for the school district said that next fall Hayes will be the parent of students attending Northshore Junior High and Inglemoor High schools and has been active in several PTA’s.

In Bothell, voters will decide two City Council primaries. Incumbent Councilman Patrick Ewing will face challenges from residents Adam Brauch and Jennifer Armenta. Incumbent Del Spivey also will face two challengers, residents Gerry Gawne and Jeffery Bogdan.

For his part, Gawne said he believes a combination of tough economic times and the city’s seemingly ambitious roster of projects — ranging from revamping downtown to realigning Bothell’s state routes — turned some interested observers into candidates.

Gawne added his belief that there seems to be a block of council members who vote together largely in lock step with Mayor Mark Lamb. Gawne said he likes Spivey, but felt the need to shake up the perceived voting block.

Challenging Spivey, Armenta currently serves as vice-chair of the city’s parks and recreation board.

“I’m running for City Council to preserve our sense of community as we explore potential expansions and downtown revitalization,” Armenta said. “We need to encourage types of business to help expand our tax base. In these challenging times, I can offer my energy and commitment to the city of Bothell.”

Two other Bothell council races will jump right to the general election. Deputy Mayor Sandy Guinn will face a challenge from resident Tom Agnew, while Councilman Joshua Freed will need to fend off resident Joyce Wojcik.

In Kenmore, voters will have only one primary race to decide as two challengers filed to face incumbent Laurie Sperry. They are residents Bob Black and Diane Brennan. Sperry previously had announced her intention to run for re-election and already has set up a campaign Web site,

“I don’t feel like I’ve finished all I want to accomplish,” Sperry said, describing Kenmore as “a work in progress.”

A third expiring council set in Kenmore currently belongs to incumbent Councilman Allan Van Ness who will face challenger Patrick O’Brien in the fall.

As for the school board, for whatever reason, the District One seat of the Northshore board attracted a crowded field of four candidates, including incumbent Sue Buske.

Challenging Buske in the summer primary will be candidates Arthur Hu, Julia Lacey and Jeff Wirrick, all of Bothell.

In the board’s only other race, incumbent Cathy Swanson will be challenged by Woodinville resident Todd Banks in the general election.

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