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Former sheriff Lathim seeks appointment to Legislature

Former Franklin County Sheriff Richard Lathim wants to be appointed to the state Legislature to represent the 9th District.

On Friday he issued a news release that he will seek to be appointed to the seat being left by Rep. Susan Fagan, R-Pullman. She resigned effective May 1 after allegations she falsified travel forms.

“I believe that I am uniquely qualified for this position,” Lathim said in the announcement.

Lathim, a Republican, was the Franklin County sheriff for 28 years, but was defeated last November by longtime Pasco police Sgt. Jim Raymond. Lathim, a lifelong Franklin County resident, has been in law enforcement for 37 years.

Lathim said he’s “demonstrated leadership at both the local and state level” and has a “28-year track record of faithfully handling taxpayer dollars on a day-to-day basis.”

“I am excited about this opportunity to serve the citizens of the 9th District,” he said.

The 9th District includes west Pasco and rural Franklin County. The six-county district extends from Othello to the southeastern corner of Washington.

Registration for the one-year unexpired term will be during the regular May 11-15 filing period. And the election will be held along with the regular Aug. 4 primary and Nov. 3 general elections.

A temporary replacement could also be appointed until the special election.

The Republican State Central Committee would submit the names of three nominees to the county commissions of Franklin, Adams, Asotin, Garfield, Spokane and Whitman counties. The combined commissions would have 60 days from Fagan’s resignation to appoint a replacement by majority vote.

Inslee would have 30 days to appoint a replacement if the commissions can’t agree on someone.