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Melanie Bailey was appointed by county commissioners last week to replace Arian Noma, who announced his resignation last month. Noma, who had been elected to a four-year term in 2018, said his office had been badly underfunded by the county, and that since taking office he suffered racist personal attacks and surveillance of his home.

Bailey, and East Wenatchee native, was one of two candidates interviewd for the post January 11th, before the commissioners voted on appointment. Both candidates were put forward by the county republican party, because Noma won election as a republican.

Bailey effectively took office January 16, 2021. She previously worked in Wenatchee with the former firm of Johnson, Guakroger, Smith and Marchant, where she handled legal affairs for the city of Wenatchee. Since then, she served about a year as a deputy prosecutor in the Okanogan County Office, first under prosecutor in the Okanogan County Office, first under prosecutor Branden Platter and then under his successor, Arian Noma.

To retain office, Bailey would have to file and run in 2022.