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Incumbents advance, fire measures win
Voters in the primary election Tuesday gave a thumbs-up to Federal Way City Council and Federal Way School Board incumbents, passed the Federal Way Fire Department's levy and approved a merger of the department with another fire district.
City Councilwoman Jeanne Burbidge topped the four-way race for Position 4. With 2,302 votes (44.4 percent), she was well ahead of runnerup Mark Walsh (1,643 votes, 31.7 percent). They'll meet in the general election in November in a contest that could hinge on whether Burbidge gains enough of the approximately 24 percent of the primary votes that went to Bill Foulkes and Gayla Hardison.
Tom Madden, the appointed District 4 School Board member, led Helen Stanwell in a close contest. Madden received 2,577 votes (35.4 percent) to Stanwell's 2,401 (32.9 percent). They're assured of reaching the November runoff, as Jim Storvick (21 percent) and Bob Wheeler (10 percent) finished well back.
Federal Way Fire Department's property tax levy, a major part of the fire protection budget, was overwhelmingly approved with a 70.5 percent yes vote.
So was Fire District 26's proposal to Des Moines voters for a merger with the Federal Way department. Nearly 90 percent of the ballots favored the merger. Voters in Federal Way weren't part of the decision.
The Des Moines district's property levy also passed.
In countywide races, King County Executive Ron Sims and Sheriff Sue Rahr easily advanced to the general election.
Sims' 58,157 votes (69.7 percent) made him the Democrats' choice to face Republican David Irons, a County Councilman who had no opposition in the primary.
Rahr, appointed last year, snared 82,565 votes (64.5 percent). Greg Schmidt (22,783, 17.8 percent) and Jim Fuda (22,397, 17.5 percent) were in a tight duel to be her opponent in November.
Updated results in all races are scheduled to be posted by the county election department today at 4:30 p.m. They'll be available at www.metrokc.gov/elections and through a link with The Mirror's on-line edition (www.fedwaymirror.com).
Election officials, still stinging from criticism of handling of ballots in last year's election, reported a hassle-free election Tuesday. Of the 177,578 absentee ballots received by yesterday, 90,709 were counted along with 52,456 votes cast at polling places. The remaining 10 precincts not included in tonight's final posting will be counted and posted tomorrow at 4:30 p.m.
"Our work is not over," said Dean Logan, the county's top election official as director of the Records, Elections and Licensing Services Department. The next 10 days will include final counting of ballots and certification of results by the Sept. 30 deadline for declaring official results.