The process to replace one of the state's most respected lawmakers moved to its last stage on Saturday, as precinct committee persons from the three counties in the district of former state Sen. Richard Devlin (D-Tualatin) met to select finalists for Devlin's seat.

The longtime lawmaker and co-chair of the budget-writing Joint Ways and Means Committee resigned effective Dec. 31 after Gov. Kate Brown appointed him to the Northwest Power Planning and Conservation Council.

That appointment set off a scramble among seven candidates for an appointment to serve out the rest of Devlin's term, which was scheduled to run through 2018.

Yesterday, precinct committee people from parts of Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties met to pick finalists for the appointment. According to the Lake Oswego Review, they first selected Rob Wagner, a Lake Oswego school board member; then Claudia Black, a recently retired lobbyist for Multnomah County, and finally, they selected West Linn environmentalist Daphne Wysham over former state Rep. Greg Macpherson (D-Lake Oswego).

State law allows the precinct committee persons to nominate up to five finalists, so the decision to leave Macpherson off the list was a snub to the former lawmaker, who was the point man on public pension cuts passed by the 2003 Legislature.

The final step in the process will be a joint meeting Jan. 29 between the three affected counties commissions, with the commissions' voting power proportional to the number of registered voters within the part of each county encompassed by SD 19. The largest share of voters in the district are in Clackamas County, followed respectively by Multnomah and Washington.