Troop Reductions
2:37 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Army Will Reduce JBLM Troop Numbers By Deactivating 4th Stryker Brigade

Soldiers from 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team out of JBLM prep their Stryker fighting vehicles and equipment for training.
Flickr Photo/The U.S. Army

The Army says Joint Base Lewis-McChord's 4th Stryker Brigade will be one of 10 combat teams deactivated nationwide. The move is just one part of the Army’s plan to reduce its forces as the war in Afghanistan winds down.

The brigade has about 4,000 soldiers. Nearly 350 of them returned home Sunday after a seven-month deployment to Afghanistan. Overall, the Army plans to reduce the force by 80,000 soldiers by 2017.

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Deadline Set For Move
10:52 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Seattle City Council Votes To Relocate Tent City Residents

Flickr Photo/javacolleen

The Seattle City Council voted unanimously Monday to spend $500,000 to relocate residents of the south Seattle tent city called "Nickelsville." The council has given residents of Nickelsville until September 1, 2013 to move out or be evicted.

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Future Of Wine Production
10:25 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Scientist: Climate Change Unlikely To Seriously Affect Northwest Wine

Anna King Northwest News Network

Originally published on Mon June 24, 2013 3:17 pm

The Northwest is well positioned to make wine into the future despite global climate change. So says a scientist who presented his findings on climate change and wine at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Wash. Monday.

Wine grape vines can be productive for decades. But how will climate change affect that? That’s the question Antonio Busalacchi, with the University of Maryland, sought to answer.

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Currency Exchange
10:25 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Falling Canadian Dollar Bears Watching Says Border Expert

Tom Banse Northwest News Network

Originally published on Mon June 24, 2013 5:08 pm

The Canadian dollar -- affectionately known as the "loonie" -- is dropping in value. 

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Washington Budget Deal
10:25 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Inslee Reports Budget 'Breakthroughs' As Layoff Notices Go Out

Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

Originally published on Mon June 24, 2013 4:27 pm

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says a budget deal in Olympia is “imminent” – even as state workers start to receive layoff notices. At a news conference Monday afternoon, the Democrat reported significant breakthroughs in budget negotiations.

A shutdown of state government is now one week away. That’s why temporary layoff notices are going out to state employees. That’s a requirement of labor contracts. Governor Inslee says he feels “enormous frustration” there wasn’t a budget deal in time to avert the notices.

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Homeless Refugee Families
9:41 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Why A Spike in King County's Homeless Refugees Is Tough To Measure

An Ethiopian refugee named Sarah and her family spent several weeks at Mary's Place homeless shelter in Seattle.
Credit KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Every year, hundreds of refugees come to Washington state to escape persecution, conflict or violence in their home countries. Washington consistently ranks as one of the top 10 states for new arrivals.

Many families come here after waiting long stretches in a refugee camp where food, water and shelter is a daily concern. Yet once they have resettled in the Seattle area, their struggles are often far from over. Some agencies that work with refugees in King County say they’ve seen an alarming rise in homelessness within this population of newcomers but they’re stymied by how to measure the increase.

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Alternative Disaster Solutions
10:42 am
Mon June 24, 2013

In A Disaster, Could Bikes Be Part Of The Answer?

Jesse Keating prepares for the Seattle Disaster Relief Trial with his cargo bike.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

Everyone knows that an earthquake or volcanic eruption could shake our region at any time. The question is how people will cope with a disaster and its aftermath.

Some people are thinking bicycles could be part of the answer. On Friday, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways sponsored the first Seattle Disaster Relief Trials at the University of Washington to see what could be carried on a cargo bike in rough conditions.

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Bridge History
9:13 am
Mon June 24, 2013

Failed Bridges In Washington's History

Allen Street Bridge

Last month's I-5 Skagit River bridge collapse is just one of a number of major bridge failures in Washington's history. Washington is home to four of the nation's 11 floating bridges, two of which have sunk. Here is a look at the state's highest-profile bridge failures.

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Complexities Of Driving A Big Rig
8:45 am
Mon June 24, 2013

Truck Driving School Ride Along

Instructor Randy Dean and student Sarah Purrington.
KUOW Photo/Derek Wang

It’s been about a month since a truck hauling an oversized load struck an I-5 bridge and sent it plunging into the Skagit River. Truckers have a tough job navigating infrastructure challenges such as obsolete bridges and increasingly congested highways. To learn more about the challenges, KUOW’s Derek Wang went to trucking school.

Failed Bridges In Washington

The I-5 Skagit River bridge collapse is just one of a number of major bridge failures in Washington's history. Washington is home to four of the nation's 11 floating bridges, two of which have sunk.

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Silver Anniversary
4:46 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

Fremont Solstice Parade Turns 25

Lonn Holiday leads the Fremont Solstice Parade.
courtesy Lonn Holiday

A popular celebration of summer in Seattle happens Saturday in the Fremont neighborhood. It’s the annual Solstice Parade.

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Unmanned Aircraft Trial
8:21 am
Fri June 21, 2013

NOAA Drone Flying Experimentally Off Olympic Coast

Ed Bowlby NOAA

Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 5:09 pm

Civilian use of aerial drones is still greatly restricted, but the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has won permission to test a small unmanned aircraft off the Olympic Coast of Washington. 

A two-week trial run by the federal science agency is now underway.

The NOAA drone looks like an oversized remote-control model airplane. It has a 9-foot wingspan and can fly for about two hours on battery power.

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Crime and Punishment
5:13 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Supreme Court Says Wash. Man Got Excessive Prison Sentence

U.S. Supreme Court
Envios Flickr

The United States Supreme Court decided Thursday that a Colville man received an excessive prison sentence when a federal judge overstepped his bounds.

The high court’s ruling was welcome news to Matthew Descamps’ family.

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Poisonous Spiders Not Native
2:39 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Scared of Spiders? Don’t Worry About The Deadly Brown Recluse In The Northwest

The venomous brown recluse spider
Phantom Rouge Flickr

If you’ve been working in the garden lately, or have taken a trip down to the basement, you’ve probably encountered a few spiders. Maybe you’ve even wondered if you’re in danger of being bitten by a brown recluse spider, whose venom can be toxic. A Washington State University entomologist says odds are you probably won’t run into one, at least not in the Pacific Northwest.

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Marijuana Production
10:15 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Washington Liquor Control Staff: Allow Outdoor Marijuana Grows

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 4:13 pm

Licensed outdoor marijuana grows may be allowed in Washington after all.

Staff at the state’s Liquor Control Board said Wednesday they’ve been persuaded by potential growers to consider alternatives to energy-intensive indoor pot production. Meanwhile, medical marijuana patients rallied at the state capitol in opposition possible new restrictions on them.

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Child Vaccinations
10:15 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Oregon Votes To Make Immunization Opt-Out Tougher


Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 3:51 pm

  Oregon parents could soon find it harder to skip having their children immunized.

The Oregon House Wednesday sent a measure to the governor that would add steps to the way parents can opt out of the requirement. A similar law went into effect in Washington state two years ago.

More than 6 percent of Oregon children enter kindergarten without the required number of vaccines. That rate is among the highest in the nation, and it has public health officials concerned.

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