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A Washington prison inmate who was accidentally released early and then locked back up has been granted a rare medical furlough. Bobby Davis said his re-release from prison this week came as a welcome surprise.

The state agency that manages hunting and fishing in Oregon is lacking a long-term strategy according to an audit by the Oregon Secretary of State's office released Thursday.

Washington lawmakers return to the Capitol on Monday for a short election-year session. They say getting bipartisan agreement on a school funding plan is a top priority.

Snohomish PUD's early designs for marine turbines that would have been part of a tidal energy pilot in Puget Sound.
COURTESY OF SNOHOMISH COUNTY PUD

A Washington utility has surrendered its federal license to install tidal turbines at the bottom of Puget Sound.

The Snohomish County Public Utility District wanted to put two turbines on the bottom of Puget Sound near Whidbey Island. But at the very end of last year it gave up its federal license.

The King County Council unanimously appointed replacements Thursday for departing Washington state Senator Jeanne Kohll-Wells. Kohll-Wells will leave the Senate since she was elected to the County Council in November.

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Daniel LeClair/Reuters

A few days after Sandy Hook, Attorney General Eric Holder traveled to the site of the mass shooting, spoke with first responders and looked at the pictures.

“I was crying. It was without question the worst day that I had as attorney general, and maybe the worst day in my professional life,” Holder said.

The jerboa is a rodent that looks like a mouse with crazy, springy hind legs. Some have compared it to a kangaroo crossed with a mouse or a tiny, fuzzy rodent t-rex. It’s native to Asia and Africa, and has developed strong hind legs to help it evade predators in barren desert areas with few places to hide. 

Video producer Christian Baker recently spent a few hours with researchers who are studying the jerboa. 

In this Dec. 15, 2015 photo, a crew member working for Seattle Tunnel Partners watches a crane lift other crew members out of the pit that STP used to access and repair Bertha.
Flickr Photo/WSDOT (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/http://bit.ly/1O7O5sO

Bertha is on the move again. 

The tunnel boring machine got stuck a little over two years ago, shortly after it hit a metal pipe. It’s taken until now to get the machine going again.

While Harney County residents are asking armed protesters to leave, many locals are sympathetic to their issues. Economists say the root may lie in the west’s rural economy.

Harney County is sparsely populated, with 7,000 residents living on 10,000 square miles of land. That used to mean a healthy timber industry.

But Josh Lehner with the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis says since 1978 Harney County has lost 99 percent of its wood product jobs, “All those manufacturing jobs are gone," he said.

Last February, three Pasco Police officers shot and killed Antonio Zambrano-Montes in a crowded intersection. Zambrano-Montes had been throwing rocks. This week, the Mexican farmworker’s mother filed suit in federal district court.

Idaho Governor Butch Otter said he has received reassurances from the federal government about the adequacy of vetting of refugees from the war-torn Middle East.

Idaho Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter spoke forcefully about observing the “rule of law” in his first comments on the armed protesters in adjacent eastern Oregon.

Tod Marshall is Washington state's new poet laureate.
Amy Sinisterra Photography

Washington state has a new poet laureate: Tod Marshall, a professor and writer at Gonzaga University.

Marshall is the first in his family to attend college. He says that experience inspired him to try to use culture – poetry in particular – to build bridges between academia and the wider community.

People rally on Capitol Hill in December in memory of Hamza Warsame, a 16-year-old Somali American who died in a fall from an apartment building.
Alex Garland

The death of a 16-year-old Somali-American youth last month in Seattle was accidental, the King County Medical Examiner's office says.

Flickr Photo/Chuck Coker (CC BY-ND 2.0) HTTP://BIT.LY/1ZPVQSL

Washington is going to take a different tack on reducing gun violence, Gov. Jay Inslee says: Treat it as a public health problem.

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