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April 2, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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April 2, 2015
 

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Page 10 Free Press Thursday, April 2, 2015 continued from page 1 information provided by individuals when they register to vote, their full name, street or postal address, city and zip code. The county election office then adds the voter's precinct number, district and the state and county voter identification numbers. It's a concept dating back to the days when Washington state voters physically went to the polls on election days, Spokane County Auditor Vicki Dalton said. Polling site officers "poll watchers" had a list of voters eligible to vote at that location. When the voter arrived, the poll watchers checked them off the list and handed them a ballot. Dalton said they also had "roamers" who went to dif- ferent sites to compare lists and make sure those voting at unassigned sites were identified to make sure someone didn't vote twice. That information was collated at the county election office to produce the matchback report indicating who voted. "That concept carried over into absentee ballots, and now vote by mail," Daltonsaid. When Washington went to the all-mail ballot system after 2008, another piece of information was added to matchback reports - the date the voter returned their ballot. This allows organizations receiving and using the report to not only track who voted, but when they voted and over time, voting trends. Dalton said the more sophisticated campaigns and organizations often pick up matchback reports daily, and utilize that information to guide their get out the vote and advocacy efforts. "You want to stop robe-calls?" Dalton asked. "Get your ballot in to us in the first three or four days." Spokane County Elections Department Manager Mike McLaughlJn said the information provided could also enable creation of a "reverse matc_hback" report: a list of individualswho did not cast a ballot in an election. The process would require comparing the matchback report to the overall list of registered voters, and removing those who cast a ballot. "We don't get too many of those (requests)," McLaughlin said of reverse matchbacks. McLaughlin said 10 organizations request matchback reports for the Feb. 10 election. The only two organizations on the West Plains were the Medical Lake School District and the Cheney School District. According to a Cheney Free Press public information request, the Cheney School District's request was sub- mitted with the county on Jan. 26, with Sharon Throop, assistant to Superintendent Dr. Debra Clemens, signing the request. County elections data lists 17,065 individuals regis- tered to vote in the Cheney School District, with a Free Press public records request for the matchback report revealing 6,439 individuals returning their ballots, a 37.7 percent turnout. The origin of information for the second part of Har- ris' comment, "eligible voters with kids in our district," is less dear. "We don't have that information," Dalton added. When contacted about the matchback report and Hams' remarks, Cheney School District Superintendent Clemens didn't acknowledge receipt of the matchback report, but instead kept referring back to the citizens com- mittee. She added she didn't know what the committee was doing, having never attended any meetings, and that they could do their own analysis of voter information. Dierk Meierbachtol, specialassistant for legal affairs at the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, said FERPA (Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act) laws prevent school districts from public dissemination of a lot of student and their family's information. The exception to this is school directories, which Meierbachtol said FERPA acknowledges contain information that can otherwise be publicly available. "Theoretically, anybody could crosscheck a school district directory against any other information," Meier- bachtol said. Clemens said that in looking at the general participa- tion rate for the Feb. 10 election it was dear there were a lot of voters in the district who did not participate. "We always encourage people to vote," she added John McCallum can be reached at com. continued from page 1 Schreiber reviewed the position description, and decided to apply herself, believing not only did she meet the qualifications but also as someone who spent some of her youth in the Cheney School District and has been an advocate for all things Cheney and the West Plains, felt it was a good fit. "It's one of those places where you walk in and everyone knows you" she said. "This is the epitome of banking local." Schreiber's family moved to Portland, Ore., from Cheney after she fin- ished her sophomore year of high school, has lived in many urban areas of the United States and even overseas, and found her- self newly divorced and in Baltimore in 2003 seeking to return closer to her mother, who lives in Tyler. With four sons in her household, she did re- search on the qualities of school districts in the area, thinking she would end up living in Spokane. Contributed photo West Plains Chamber of Commerce Outgoing West Plains Commerce Executive Direc- tor Kathleen Schreiber (left) with the chamber's new administrative specialist Audry Audette. "Cheney (School Dis- were struggling. The West trict) just kept coming Plains organization was no up (at the top)," she said. exception, with its board of "Somewhere in the mix, I directors entertaining the just figured that Cheney idea of disbanding. was the best place." Schreiber said the Schreiber joined the board was"doing its best" West Plains Chamber of to keep going, and felt it Commerce as its executive just needed "fresh eyes director in July 2010 at a andears" to see things dif- time when the national ferently. Schreiber helped economy was just begin- provide some of those, ning to emerge from the and over time the cham- Great Recession and cham- ber rebounded and has bets all over the country flourished, growing to its continued from page 1 himself and focus on 'het . It's difficult to be a what's best for the corn- professional firefighter classes ofrecruits and crew munity, and have a regular job. leaders each year. "You have to sacrifice We want to keep that "The three fire de-quite a bit," Allen said. atmosphere going," partments relied on each "Our department has Allen enjoys working other through the pro- embodied the motto that alongside the fire depart- cess of that first acad- our community's needsment who he coz siders emy," Allen said. Now are met frst, even if it his closest friends and it's not uncommon to see means sacrificing some family. Being afirefighter other departments train of our time:" also gives him a chance and work with Medical Allen said when theto make someone's bad Lake and vice versa." department goes on calls, day a little better. As a captain, Allenthey go as if it could be Allen's time in Medi- monitors the training of one of their own family cal Lake is almost at an Medical Lake firefight- members. He also focus- end as he and his family ers, as well as the track- es on keeping frefight- plan to move to Montana ing and coordinating ers at his departmentin Augdst. all fire and emergency "highly involved and "It's a little tough to medical services in the motivated." swallow, we've all be- area. He also participates "Our chiefs have done come so close over the in the creative aspect of great with motivation," years," Allen said. "It's officer training. Allen said. "We've cre- become a family environ- For Allen, that being ated an open training at- merit." a first responder means mosphere of people who Al Stover can be reached he has to take a part of are willing to come down at al@cheneyfreepress. current 320 members - a 155 percent increase since 2010 - as well as seeing a 70 percent increase in revenues and 300 percent increase in member partici- pation in monthly events. The importance of the chamber regionally has also grown. Schreiber said when she first started it was difficult to find speakers for the monthly meetings. Now, people want. to talk tothe chamber, Sch- reiber said, and business and civic leaders often ask for its position and support on issues. The chamber has formed partnerships with large organizations such as Greater Spokane Incorporated, Fairchild Air Force Base, Cheney and Medical Lake school dis- tricts, Eastern Washington University, the Spokane and Kalispell tribes and the Cheney Met :hants As- sociation. But Schreiber's favorite part of this form of com- munity development is the chamber's relation- ship with area non-profits. Schreiber said 30 percent of their members are non- profit organizations. "It's everybody com- ing together, and thafs so powerful/' she said. There won't be much of a beat skipped with Schreiber's leaving: Last "I'm excited to see week the board hired state what happens when I Sen. Mike Baumgartner's pass the baton on the next legislative assistant Joe leg of the relay," Schreiber Jackson as its new execu- said. "This has been the rive director. Jackson, a best job I ever had, most U.S. Army veteran, has definitely. This is a great an AA degree fromPierce community." College in Tacoma and J 0 h n M. c C a l - receivedhisbachelor'sde- lum can be reached at gree in communications jmac@cheneyfreepress. from EWU in 2013. com. OPEN HOUSE THIS SUNDAY Of course .... there's no one in there. Join us EaSter Sunday at Wostside Chapel a8 we celebrate the empty tomb that gives us a full life. Easter Sunday, April 5, 10:30 AM 14408 S. WESTSIDE CH/~PEL SR 904 (across from the rodeo grounds) Cheney, WA (509) 235-2600 I~i! i:: " " ~ OPTOMETRY I [ ~: ~~!i~:i~ No vision Insurance? No Problem! I Ask about our Vision Haus Savings Club. 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