Northwest NEWS

October 26, 1998

Local News

State Senator - 45th District

   by Andrew Walgamott
   The 45th includes Duvall, Carnation and parts of Woodinville, Redmond and Kirkland.

Bill Finkbeiner
   Party: Republican
   Personal: age, 29; occupation, contract program manager, Microsoft; hometown, Kirkland; family, married, one son
   Bill Finkbeiner joined the House of Representatives at the ripe old, age of 23, became a state Senator at 25, and now, at 29, hopes to be re-elected for another term.
   "I'm doing a good job, I stand up for the district. I'm voting independently, not party line, but still being effective," Finkbeiner said.
   If re-elected, his top two priorities are to continue work on telecommunications and education. As the chair of the Energy and Utilities committee, he says there are issues on bandwidth delivery to homes and businesses that are important.
   Finkbeiner, who is vice chair of the Education Committee, says while he supports charter schools, he'd like to continue seeing high academic standards enforced, but allow school districts flexibility.
   He went in as a Democrat but switched parties. After two years in the house, he said he didn't agree with Democrats votes on the budget, or the size and scope of government. But switching to the Republican wasn't an exact fit either.
   Finkbeiner considers himself a fiscal conservative and a social moderate, and as an example of the latter says he is more pro-choice, though not 100 percent, votes for the environment and has been endorsed by the Washington Conservation Voters.

Bill Grace
   Party: Democrat
   Personal: age, 45; occupation, financial consultant; hometown, Kirkland; family, married
   Bill Grace says he has a "wealth of resources and experience to bring to the community" if elected.
   He said education and growth would be his focus if elected.
   On education, Grace said he would do something to increase teachers' salaries with the caveat that not every problem is solved by throwing money at it.
   He also said that teachers need to continue learning and be certified to ensure they meet standards themselves.
   On growth, Grace said there needs to be more city control for growth moratoriums, and that rural areas should stay rural. He added that developers should pay for infrastructure costs.
   He advocates planning development where people can get from where they live to where they work.
   This is Grace's first run for office, though he was president of Running Mate Political Consulting where he managed or consulted for Brock Adams, Jim McDermott and several others.
   Asked why he was a Democrat, he remarked that Hubert Humphrey once said that the mark of a great country is taking care of those in need of assistance.
   "It comes down to giving a hand rather than a handout," Grace said.
   He promised to hold quarterly meetings in the district.