News

Public Sculpture
8:49 am
Mon September 9, 2013

Fremont Troll: From Counterculture Jab To Cultural Icon

Fremont Troll co-creator Steve Badanes.
Credit KUOW Photo/Marcie Sillman

Seattle is a city full of icons. Visitors stop to gawk at the Space Needle. They marvel as Pike Place Market fishmongers blithely toss a fresh salmon to one another as the crowd cheers them on. And they trek to a dead end street in the Fremont neighborhood to pay homage to a homely gray cement sculpture.

This is the Fremont Troll, and he's been a hulking presence under Highway 99 for the past 23 years. Co-creator Steve Badanes, a University of Washington architecture professor, and two of his students submitted the idea for the troll in 1990. The Fremont Arts Council was holding a contest to create an artwork for this street end. A panel of judges would pick three finalists, then the public would vote at a booth at that year's Fremont Solstice Festival.

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Bilingual Theater
12:01 pm
Sun September 8, 2013

Rose Cano Crosses Language Barriers To Bring Theatre To The People

Rose Cano
Seattle Times Photo/Erika Schultz

Rose Cano is a social worker in the broadest sense. By day, Cano translates for Spanish-speaking people with health care needs. But Cano's true social platform is theater. She envisions a society where live drama is accessible and in demand by everyone. And she devotes her time outside the office to making that happen.

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Signatures Restored
6:11 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

SeaTac Minimum Wage Initiative Headed to November Ballot

An initiative to raise the minimum wage in the City of SeaTac will appear on the November ballot. A ruling Friday from a state appeals court cleared the path for the measure to move forward.

SeaTac’s Prop 1 initiative aims to set a minimum wage at $15 an hour for many workers at and around the airport, like baggage handlers and hotel staff.

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Teaching Radio
5:52 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Group Wants To Start Low-Power Radio Station In Ballard

Correction 9/9/2013: A previous version of this story said this year would be the first time that the Federal Communications Commission would issue low-power licenses in urban areas. The FCC started issuing these licenses under a program that launched in 2000. Also, the original version of this story said the community meeting would be held on Friday, 9/6. That is also inaccurate, the meeting will be held Monday 9/9/13. We regret the errors. 

A group in Ballard is meeting Friday to discuss plans for a low-power FM radio station — a small-scale station that broadcasts in a radius of about three miles.

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Bridge Construction Delay
2:03 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Rain Delays Skagit River Replacement Bridge Construction

Computer simulation of completed replacement Skagit River bridge (foreground) adjacent to temporary bridge. The replacement will slide into the temporary site once work is completed.
Courtesy of WSDOT

UPDATE: 9/9/2013, 1:30 p.m. PT

The Washington state Department of Transportatation says the new replacement bridge on I-5 over the Skagit River should be ready to drive on Sunday morning.

WSDOT officials say the weather’s drying out enough to pour concrete on the replacement span that’s being constructed adjacent to the temporary bridge. Recent heavy rains have delayed the pouring operation. After the concrete cures, they’ll slide the new bridge into place.

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Washington State Lobbyists
9:29 am
Fri September 6, 2013

Washington Ethics Board Tackles Lobbyist-Paid Meals

Robert S. Donovan Flickr

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 1:56 pm

Washington’s Legislative Ethics Board is tackling the issue of how often lawmakers can accept meals from lobbyists. The Board spent nearly two hours behind closed doors Thursday discussing a complaint against several lawmakers who dined out regularly with lobbyists last session.

The complaint was triggered by our investigation with the Associated Press into lawmakers who accept free meals from lobbyists. That’s permitted if legislative business is discussed, but only on an infrequent basis.

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Entrepreneurship
9:28 am
Fri September 6, 2013

Wooden Kayak Company Is A Profile of Perseverance

Tom Banse Northwest News Network

Originally published on Fri September 6, 2013 1:29 pm

One of the biggest festivals in the nation celebrating wooden boats is happening in Port Townsend, Washington this weekend.

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High Court Review
8:16 am
Fri September 6, 2013

High Court Affirms Lower Court Ruling On Disclosure Of Murder Defendant's Competency Evaluation

The case before the high court involved Seattle doctor Louis Chen. Chen is accused of murdering his partner and their young son two years ago in their apartment on First Hill.

Attorneys for Chen had argued that their client’s mental competency review be kept secret under a state statute that limits who can see the information.

The high court disagreed.

Michelle Hubbard, a media law attorney at Allied Law Group, says in its ruling the court wrote that the constitutional presumption of openness trumps state law. “What this does is make clear that the same rules apply to court proceedings as to court records. Courts are open. Court records are open," Hubbard said. 

The high court, Hubbard said, was clear about why it’s important that the public have access to this type of information. Defendants who are deemed not competent could be committed for an indeterminate amount of time Hubbard said.

A King County Superior Court judge has ruled Chen competent to stand trial. He’s been charged with two counts of aggravated first degree murder. Prosecutors said they will not seek the death penalty.

The trial is expected to start this spring. If he’s found guilty, Chen faces life in prison without parole.

Personal Data
9:35 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Reports: Spy Agencies Getting Past Tech Company Encryption

Flickr Photo/Chris Hardie

Reports from the New York Times, the Guardian and ProPublica cast light on how spy agencies are obtaining private data. The news organizations say the US National Security Agency is using covert partnerships with technology companies to weaken encryption software.

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Tech Jobs
9:28 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Google Breaks Ground On Kirkland Expansion

Google's current offices in Kirkland.
Credit Flickr Photo/Marcin Wichary

Google officially launched construction of a new building to double its campus in Kirkland.

The Seattle area is already home to the third-largest Google center in the US, behind New York City and Mountain View, California. Google says it’s expanding here because it likes the talent coming out of nearby universities. It is not saying how much it intends to grow its workforce in Kirkland.

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Moral Culpability
9:21 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

State Supreme Court Sends Death Penalty Case Back To King County Court

State Supreme Court Justice Charles Wiggins said the death penalty case can proceed.
TVW

A unanimous opinion from the Washington Supreme Court has ruled that a death penalty case in the so-called Christmas Eve murders can proceed. The ruling finds that King County prosecutors handled the case correctly. 

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Mayor's Race
1:20 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Only In Seattle: Murray And McGinn Accuse One Another Of Being Pro-Business

Seattle mayoral candidates Ed Murray and Mike McGinn at a forum on life sciences and cancer research.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

The latest campaign filings show state Senator Ed Murray outpacing incumbent Mayor Mike McGinn in contributions for the Seattle mayor’s race. But at a campaign forum Wednesday night, Murray seemed anxious to escape any criticism of being the big money candidate.

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9:38 am
Thu September 5, 2013

Flash Flood Warnings For Washington

Lead in text: 
The National Weather Service issued flash flood watches and special weather statements today for much of Washington state. Learn more at WSDOT.
Seattle Beer Capital
3:49 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Ballard Brewery District Thrives By Balancing Cooperation And Competition

Maritime Pacific Brewing Company & Jolly Roger Taproom's founder George Hancock.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

When you run a coffee shop, and someone else opens a coffee shop across the street, that’s usually a bad thing. But sometimes, when you get enough similar businesses in one location, that’s good. And the benefits of cooperation outweigh the cost of the extra competition.

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New Rules On Pot
1:03 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Revised Pot Rules Allow 334 Retail Stores In Washington

Flickr Photo/prensa4 (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Washington could have as many as 334 marijuana retail stores statewide. That’s the cap proposed on Wednesday by the state’s Liquor Control Board.

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