OMAK — Omak newscaster Becki Andrist announced this week that she will run for Okanogan County commissioner Position 3 this fall.
Andrist, 37, owns three radio stations with her husband, John P. Andrist, — KOMW, KNCW and KZBE. She is also news director. The couple owns NCIData.com and Methow.com, Internet service providers in the Okanogan and Methow valleys.
Andrist said she decided to run after learning that Commissioner Mary Lou Peterson will not seek re-election this fall. She will run as a Republican.
Peterson confirmed she will not seek a third term. She said she plans to make an announcement explaining her decision in March.
Andrist said if elected, she would step down as news director for her radio stations. “I wouldn’t do anything halfway, so to be county commissioner and try to be a news director just isn’t going to happen,” she said.
She said she would continue to work in other areas of the radio, such as billing. “But I wouldn’t have time to be on the air,” she said.
She said the struggling economy is the biggest issue facing the county right now. “My top priority is making sure every dollar we’re spending is spent wisely,” she said. “Safeguarding those tax dollars is huge for me.”
Andrist said raising taxes is not an option for resolving cutbacks in county government, in her opinion. She said the county may need to take a close look at the services it offers, and see if those services are truly ones that the people want.
Andrist said she has been involved in the community for many years, and wants to do all she can to keep Okanogan County a place where people can earn a living and raise families.
She grew up on a ranch outside of Loomis and graduated from the Tonasket High School. She and John raised three sons in the Omak area.
She currently serves on the Okanogan County Board of Equalization and the Regional Planning Commission. She was previously board president for Okanogan County Community Action Council.
K.C. Mehaffey: 997-2512