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Fire board appoints Bunk to open seat

Ray Bunk III -
Ray Bunk III
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By Dennis Box-The Courier-Herald

Ray Bunk III has been appointed to the East Pierce Fire and Rescue's District 22 fire commission board to complete Roger Coleman's term.

The 54-year-old Coleman, a Lake Tapps resident, resigned Oct. 8 following his guilty plea to misdemeanor drug charges in King County Superior Court. Coleman was on the board for 10 years and served as a vice president when he resigned.

The board voted unanimously to appoint the 35-year-old Bunk to the vacant seat.

During the Aug. 21 primary election Bunk finished on top among four candidates with 1,362 votes, gaining 32.16 percent. Coleman ran second with 1,291, 30.48 percent.

“I was real surprised when Roger resigned,” Bunk said. “I'm still hanging up signs and working on the campaign. I want to make sure I win the vote. It could be a black eye to the fire district if I don't win and we don't need that.”

Coleman and Bunk's names will still appear on the Nov. 6 general election ballot for Fire District No. 22 Commissioner Position 1.

If Bunk wins he will serve a six-year term.

A problem arises if Coleman wins.

Coleman withdrew his name from the ballot through the Pierce County Auditor's office, but not in time to have his name removed.

If Coleman receives the most votes in the general election, Bunk would serve a two-year appointed term. After the two-year term the commission may have to schedule another election, but a legal decision on the issue has not been made.

This is the first attempt at a political campaign for Bunk, who works as a Federal Way police officer.

He was sworn in Oct. 16 and was assigned to the finance committee.

The District 22 fire board covers an area including Buckley, Bonney Lake, Lake Tapps and Sumner.

Bunk said there are a number of important issues facing the board, including negotiating a contract with the firefighters union and completing the merger agreement between Sumner and East Pierce Fire and Rescue.

Dennis Box can be reached at dbox@courierherald.com.

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