Flemming’s move may hint at 2014 plans

Staff writerMay 22, 2013 

Pierce County Council member Stan Flemming says he has moved from University Place to Gig Harbor so that he has the option of running for re-election in 2014.

Flemming said he started renting a house in the Gig Harbor area about two weeks ago. He said he now resides there.

Flemming, a Republican, had been a longtime resident of University Place and formerly served on the University Place City Council and in the Legislature.

During redistricting in 2011, he was drawn out of his council District 7 with three years left on his term.

He said he hasn’t decided whether he will run for the County Council or for Congress in 2014.

“Do I vote and have residence in my (council) district?” Flemming told The News Tribune this week. “The answer is, ‘Yes.’

“Don’t let that be a sign that I’m committing to do something,” he added. “I actually started looking there eight months ago.”

Flemming said he lives — and sleeps — at his new residence.

He said his wife, Martha, lives at the house in University Place, where he lived before moving. He declined to elaborate further.

Flemming finished third in last summer’s primary election in his bid to represent Washington’s new 10th Congressional District. That seat was won by Democrat Denny Heck.

Living in Gig Harbor puts Flemming in the Sixth Congressional District, where he presumably would face first-term Democrat Derek Kilmer from Gig Harbor. However, congressional candidates don’t have to live within their district.

To run for re-election to the County Council, however, Flemming had to move.

The county charter requires council members to be residents and registered voters of their districts for at least one year prior to filing for their position. Filing will end May 16, 2014 for next year’s County Council races.

Flemming barely updated his voter registration address in time — on May 15, at a state Department of Licensing office, said County Auditor Julie Anderson. The Auditor’s Office received and processed the change the next day, she said.

That makes Flemming eligible to file for his County Council position on the last day of filing next year, she said.

During redistricting in 2011, the Gig Harbor peninsula was split off from University Place and Fircrest, and linked to Tacoma’s West and North ends.

The once-a-decade process, based on the U.S. census, is aimed at creating seven County Council districts with equal-size populations.

If Flemming runs again for the County Council, he would be seeking his second and final four-year term because of term limits. County Council members earn an annual salary of $107,602.

Flemming said he needs to retire debt from his last campaign and determine how much support he has before deciding whether to run for Congress again. Federal Election Commission filings show that Flemming’s 2012 campaign had $6,468 cash on hand but had a debt of $54,950 through the end of March.

Steve Maynard: 253-597-8647
steve.maynard@thenewstribune.com
blog.thenewstribune.com/politics
@TNTstevemaynard

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