September 2, 2011 |

Granite Falls elections off to a running start

The primary elections are over and Granite Falls City Council incumbent Wes Roeder will not be on the general election ballot. Roeder received a mere 16 percent of the votes.

Newcomers Tess Greene and Thomas Gallagher will be running against one another in the general election.

Currently Greene is in the lead with 47.48 percent of the vote and Gallagher trailing with 32.34 percent of the vote.

Councilman Matt Hartman is running unopposed.

The toughest campaign will most likely be that of Snohomish County Executive where incumbent Aaron Reardon is running just five points ahead of State Representative Mike Hope.

Both Hope and Reardon have specific ideas of what the county needs to recover from the over 10 percent unemployment and failing economy and bringing jobs to Snohomish County is on the top of their lists.

“Jobs, jobs and jobs,” Hope said when asked what his priories are for the county. “Everyone knows someone that has been out of work or someone whose home has been or is being foreclosed. We have to get the economy moving forward again and the county has to play an essential role.

“Our team put forth its ‘Getting Snohomish County Back to Work Plan’ a couple weeks ago. We are the only one in this race that has publicly created one. My top three priorities are actually five, since the plan has five steps. All five steps are essential for recovery. Our full detailed plan can be read at, but the steps are regional collaboration-compete globally, keeping our workforce at home, reinvest in the private sector, root out mismanagement and enhancing our educational opportunities.”

Reardon feels the same way about creating jobs for locals. He also wants to continue to keep the budget balanced and not raise taxes.

“Securing the next generation Boeing 737 super-site in Snohomish County; continuing to balance our county’s budget without raising taxes; and providing new opportunities for baby boomers who have lost their jobs as well as young people just starting out in the job market through training and growth in high-wage jobs,” Reardon stated regarding his top priorities.

Reardon has eight years of experience as County Executive and has seen first hand both a growing economy and one that has continued to spiral downward over the past few years.

“In these turbulent times, we need a proven leader at the county with a record of getting the job done. I’ve helped make our county competitive by cutting red tape, balancing the budget and building a rainy day fund without raising taxes,” Reardon said. “I’ll be in neighborhoods all over the county over the next two months talking to voters about our shared vision of the work that must be done moving forward and the foundation we’ve laid to accomplish those tasks.”

Hope will bring his experience as a state representative and Seattle Police Officer to the table if he wins the election this November.

“I think both positions will add tremendous practical experience as will my experience of being a former business owner. I am in my 14th year of law enforcement and have a grasp of what works and what doesn’t in the criminal justice setting. This is beneficial because 70 percent of the county budget is criminal justice related. I believe this gives me a huge advantage when drafting a budget,” Hope said. As a state representative, I have had the opportunity to sit on the Capitol Budget Committee, Human Services Committee, Public Safety and Education Committee. Not only does this provide budgetary experience, it provides the ability to demonstrate that I can prioritize and negotiate to get things done.”

An important part of both campaigns will be to get the over 75 percent of county voters to actually mail in their ballots prior to the November election.

Ensuring that voters actually take the time to vote and mail in their ballots could be crucial in this tight race.

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