Community lawyer and frequent candidate for public office Sharon Kay Schiller has announced that she is running to run for state representative in the 16th Legislative District, hoping to fill the seat held by Rep. Mark Klicker, R-Walla Walla.
Due to the redistricting, the 16th Legislative District will include Walla Walla County, just under half of Benton County, and part of Franklin County.
Each legislative district is served by two state representatives and one state senator. The 16th Legislative District is represented by Klicker; Rep. Skyler Rude, R-Walla Walla; and Sen. Perry Dozier, R-Waitsburg. Both Rude and Klicker are up for re-election, while Dozier’s term runs until 2024.
Schiller, who wrote in a press release that she had mixed feelings for the two main political parties, is running as a member of the Peace and Freedom party, which is “committed to socialism, democracy, ecology , feminism and racial equality,” according to the party’s website.
“I am challenging two very capable men for Position 1 of the (16th Legislative District),” Schiller wrote in the statement. “We have the partisan challenge again, and most of us have in mind what Democrats and Republicans want. I’m a mix of both and have negative reviews with both.
She ran unsuccessfully for a position on the Walla Walla City Council in 2015, 2019 and 2021.
If voters send her to Olympia, Schiller said in the statement she would work to pass a long list of policy proposals, including increasing police funding specifically for hiring more officers, improving public transport, creating day centers to supplement communities with overnight shelters for the homeless. , and make the state tax system more progressive.
Schiller wrote that she would also work to set up teams to work with city and county parks and rights-of-way to eliminate problematic weeds rather than using herbicides, which, according to it creates an “aesthetic deficit”.
When asked how she would improve city and county resources if elected to state government, she replied that it would be done by providing funding to those local governments to be used for that purpose.
Topping a list of priorities sent to the Union-Bulletin, Schiller also wrote that she would offer to reinstate “the state’s litter fine – primarily for throwing trash out of car windows.” .
Such a statewide fine for littering already exists, however. When asked to explain the discrepancy, Schiller said she was “unaware of the current state” of the law, and said her priority would therefore be to promote education and enforcement of existing waste laws.
Schiller is a longtime resident of Walla Walla and graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1974. She attended Western Washington University but enlisted in the United States Army before graduating from college. She worked as a medical laboratory specialist from 1978 to 1980.
She earned a business administration degree from Walla Walla College in 1983 and a nursing degree from Eastern Oregon University in 1999, she wrote in the statement.
She returned to the Walla Walla region in 2010 and regularly attends local city and county government meetings. She served on the City of Walla Walla Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee from 2011 to 2013.