ELLENSBURG, Wash. - State Rep. Bill Hinkle has resigned his House seat, and his elected successor may take office weeks earlier than expected.
The Daily Record says Hinkle, who has served in the state Legislature since 2002, announced his resignation in a press release Friday. The Republican did not seek re-election this year for the district covering Kittitas County and parts of Grant and Yakima Counties.
Republican Matt Manweller defeated Democrat Kaj Selmann in Tuesday's general election. Manweller would have replaced Hinkle Jan. 14, but may be sworn in later this month or early December, depending on when election results are certified.
Hinkle says he resigned because he wanted to steer clear of ethical conflicts in connection with his job leading an organization that represents rental property owners in Western Washington.
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