Due to risks associated with the continued impact of COVID-19, Secretary of State Kim Wyman and Washington’s county election officials called on Governor Jay Inslee to cancel the upcoming April 28 special election using the emergency powers granted to him in statute.
“When conducting elections, officials must always balance access with security. Right now, both of these standards are in peril,” said Wyman. “As this pandemic continues to evolve, we cannot guarantee to conduct this election by the same standards we administer every other election. We also cannot mitigate potential critical reductions in key election workers.”
Wyman is working with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal and other affected jurisdictions to find alternative options, including holding the elections during the August primary or November general. The elections can be rescheduled by the boards of each jurisdiction for future election dates, at their discretion.
Local jurisdictions across 18 counties were scheduled to hold special elections on April 28. Jurisdictions in at least two counties had proactively cancelled their April election requests by the time the letter was sent to the governor.
Canceling the election impact the North Mason School District which has a levy election set for April 28th.
Washington’s Office of Secretary of State oversees a number of areas within state government, including managing state elections, registering corporations and charities, and governing the use of the state flag and state seal. The office also manages the State Archives and the State Library, documents extraordinary stories in Washington’s history through Legacy Washington, oversees the Combined Fund Drive for charitable giving by state employees, and administers the state’s Address Confidentiality Program to help protect survivors of crime.