Diana Toledo In Race For County Council Seat Despite Rejection of Signatures

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by Mark Neuman

Diana Toledo is a self described “proactive” person. That particular proactive quality may have preserved her young candidacy for a seat on the Metropolitan King County Council.

Toledo, a former King County employee, told The B-Town Blog that “my blowing the whistle on gross mismanagement and waste of taxpayer money” in King County government resulted in her being laid off May 1 after 15 years of county employment.

“I was no longer included in policy-making meetings and I realized I was being pushed out,” she said. “My position in management was cut in fake budgetary reorganization. I was told about the position cut while I was on fully protected family medical leave after the birth of my baby.”

Shortly thereafter, Toledo decided to run for Dow Constantine’s former seat, now held by the appointed Jan Drago, who has opted not to run for election.

Toledo, her husband Jerry and brother David, and “lots of grass roots supporters” spent the recent three weeks collecting signatures of about 1,500 voters to get her name on the August 17 primary ballot.

“I lost my voice collecting signatures,” she said.

Diana Toledo and family.

A minimum of 1,277 valid signatures had to be turned in by 5pm this past Friday, June 11, to qualify for the ballot. The signatures would waive the necessity of paying a filing fee, which, Diana Toledo said, is $1,277.47.

Before filing “we crossed off about 30 signatures due to coming from voters outside the 8th District,” she said. “We turned in about 1,467 signatures on Friday (June 11) at about 10am.”

Four hours later, three hours before the filing deadline “the lady from the county elections office called to say we didn’t make the cut due to signatures not matching” original voter signature cards.

“They only went through 900 signatures. The look of someone’s signature can easily change over, say, 20 years,” Toledo said.

“I am a proactive person. We’d been told anywhere from ten to twenty percent of signatures get tossed out for various reasons. So I left a check with the elections office to cover the filing fee in the event we didn’t make the signature cut.”

Leaving that check kept her name on the ballot.

Diana Toledo began working for King County selling pet licenses door-to-door while a student at the University of Washington.

“I worked my way up the system,” said Toledo, whose work involved business license inspections.

“In 2006, I was brought in to fix the the animal cruelty investigations program and to repair the county relationship with the animal welfare community,” Toledo said.

“I would like to see what can be done to save the South Park bridge,” which will be closed June 30. “We need to be fiscally responsible. Twenty thousand cars will be diverted daily and many small businesses will be impacted,” she said.

“When I was a baby we were just a stone’s throw from the South Park bridge. My brothers used to fish from under the bridge.”

King County Council District 8 includes Normandy Park, Burien, parts of SeaTac and Tukwila, North Highline, West Seattle, and Vashon and Maury Islands.

Also running for the non-partisan council seat are State Senator Joe McDermott, Normandy Park City Council member Shawn McEvoy and South Park resident and professional carpenter Tim Fahey.

The all mail-in primary election ballots will be sent to voters by July 28. The two candidates receiving the most votes will advance to the November 2 general election.

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5 Responses to “Diana Toledo In Race For County Council Seat Despite Rejection of Signatures”
  1. MPO says:

    I’m glad to hear that Ms. Toledo is still in the running for King County Council. She is well known and liked at the County by co-workers, community leaders, taxi-cab drivers, and animal advocates.
    She brings a unique blend of fresh focus and experience. Whereas the career politicians on the ballot might bring name recognition, Ms. Toledo brings hands-on experience in King County managment. This experience, plus a genuine heart for the community, programs, and people of King County make her my choice. It’s time we put principals before politics.

  2. Coverofnight says:

    A “County election official” disallowed her signatures after her being laid off/pushed out from her “County job” for whistle-blowing? Sounds like a Chicago-style political tactic – the “fix is in”…..gee, if that’s the case, I wonder where the County Democrats got that method of operation? Good luck to you, Diana. Would like to know your party affiliation and stand on the issues, though. Maybe you can jump out ahead of the pack and do a follow-up with the B-Town Blog for this information. Still waiting for that information from McEvoy and Fahey. Forget McDermott – he wants a state income tax, so you can imagine the increased taxes he’ll be going for out of our hard earned paychecks!

  3. Mark Neuman says:

    To our readers: We, the staff of the B-Town Blog, are arranging a Candidates Forum featuring all four contenders in this race (Fahey, McDermott, McEvoy and Toledo). The public will be invited. Stay tuned in the next week or so for more information.

  4. Chris says:

    So, she blew the whistle on waste and mismanagement in King County. She’s got my vote already.

    It’ll be a tough fight against Joe McDermott, but he can be beat. The other two guys I don’t know much about.

    My advice to her would be to get out on the street, and door bell, door bell, door bell. Then start hitting the phone banks.

    You can bet McDermott will be lobbying hard to get all the endorsements he can, such as the 34th district Dems, as well as all the labor groups out there.

    Good luck to here though.

    • Coverofnight says:

      McDermott’s in with labor groups as well as favoring a state income tax? Holy smokes! I see a perfect storm brewing if he’s elected – higher taxes to pay for more union entitlements! This guy must worship at the Altar of Barack! Let’s elect the whistle-blower; sounds like she’s acting in the public’s best interest.

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