Spokane City Council to discuss ordinance giving them final say on major facilities

SPOKANE, Wash. — Eight Spokane Police officers have been moving into their new precinct building in East Central, since last week. Now, they could be relocating once again.

On Monday, the Spokane City Council will be voting on an ordinance to make sure they have the final say on all major Spokane facilities, including police precincts.

READ: Spokane Mayor announces new East Central police space

Mayor Nadine Woodward did not need council permission to relocate the south Spokane police precinct into the old East Central library.  but councilmember Betsy Wilkerson, who represents the district, says she was blindsided.

“For government transparency, and community engagement, I feel like that wasn’t the best way to proceed,” Wilkerson said

City council members say there is a process that was completely skipped, and neither they nor the community was able to weigh in on the move.

“What I do understand is this council’s effort, to take away authority from me, the strong mayor. Our city changed this charter 20 years ago, and I think what they’re trying to do is just trying to erode the power of this office,” Mayor Woodward said.

Wilkerson and City Council President Breean Beggs believe the precinct will have a greater impact on the East Sprague Corridor. The East Central Spokane Neighborhood Council feels differently, and likes the library location.

“We’d been working with the city administration on that proposal as to move the police precinct into there,” said Randy McGlenn, Chairman of the East Central Neighborhood Council.

However, the neighborhood council says either spot is better than the South precinct’s current location at the St. Ann’s Catholic Church, on 2116 E. 1st Ave.

The city council will be discussing this ordinance on Thursday, and will be voting on it on July 11. 4 News Now will be covering the final decision closely.

READ: ‘Where’s the transparency?’ Mayor, Council at opposite ends of new East Central police precinct

READ: Mayor Woodward to discuss camping ordinances on Wednesday