Fact-checking and breaking down the ‘Curing Spokane’ video

Reviews are coming in for a controversial documentary that dropped Thursday, and they cover both sides of the political spectrum.

The documentary in question, ‘Curing Spokane,’ lists off four approaches to tackling crime and safety in Spokane.

Candidate Ben Stuckart said looking at that video, he couldn’t help but think better services are needed to offer to those who need help.

“The fact is, our low-income and homeless population are most vulnerable,” the narrator of the video said.

The video was commissioned by developer Larry Stone, offering a solution to what Stone refers to as a crime problem.

“You can’t watch that video and not see that people are in desperate need of mental health services, addiction services and housing,” Stuckart said.

The video offers solutions needed to help the city. From building a new, bigger jail to having more police on the streets. Also, moving the Spokane Transit Authority plaza underground and having better parking solutions.

“Spokane County commissioners and the city of Spokane must step up,” the narrator said.

While Nadine Woodward could not go on camera, she referred to her post on Facebook and praised the video.

“Downtown crime and our addiction crisis is driving businesses to leave out economic center and keeping residents from enjoying our incredible restaurants, wineries, breweries and stores. Not to mention the property damage and loss of revenue many businesses have suffered… Thank you Larry for recognizing the need for a stronger, more visible police presence.”

In a previous interview with Stone, he said he was not endorsing either candidate.

“From what I see, we have two candidates for mayor that really care and want to do some good things for Spokane, so I’m not… I’m neutral and I wish them both the best,” he said.

According to the Public Disclosure Commission website, it cites that Stone has donated more than $900 to Stuckart’s campaign.

The Claims

On the ‘Curing Spokane’ website, they said last year, STA spent more than $8 million on the plaza with $5 million in remodeling costs.

In a statement, STA spokesperson Brandon Rapez-Betty said in 2018, they spent $1.96 million for operating and capital expenses. In 2019, they spent 1.05 million for those same expenses. There was a $5 million project between 2016 and 2017.

“In the first half of this year alone, the STA downtown bus station made more than 640 calls of service to law enforcement,” the video said.

Rapez-Betty said they have verified 99 instances in 2019 when police did respond to incidents in the plaza for calls of service.

The candidates’ reaction to ‘Curing Spokane’ clearly lays out their priorities for this campaign.

Woodward said having more police enforcing the law is her number one priority.

Stuckart wants to have services for those in need 24/7.