Why no local cartoonists?

Question: In past years The Spokesman-Review (and Spokane Daily Chronicle) editorial page was home to political cartoons that featured opinions on local and regional issues. Cartoonists such as Shaw McCutcheon and Milt Priggee offered serious opinions with a humorous or satirical twist. Now, all we get are nationally syndicated artists with only national or international subject matter. How about getting a local or regional view?

The cartoons by Jeff Johnson that I see in the Colville Statesman Examiner would be a great addition to The Spokesman-Review on a regular basis. -- Al Gilson, Spokane

Answer: Until a few years ago, The Spokesman-Review had an editorial cartoonist on staff. Like any other business, a newspaper has to decide how best to allocate the personnel it has the budget to hire. When the cartoonist position became vacant, it was decided that we would better serve our readership by relying primarily on syndicated artists and using more of our local payroll on reporting and editing work. We do have a freelance arrangement with Bellingham-based cartoonist Rik Dalvit who focuses on Northwest issues and whose work occasionally appears on our opinion pages. -- Doug Floyd, editorial page editor

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