News

Labor
10:37 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Machinists Head Steps Down: 'Your Job Should Not Destroy Your Health'

Tom Wroblewski, pictured in 2012, has stepped down as president of the local Machinists union. The Machinists narrowly approved a Boeing contract on Jan. 3.
Credit Photo IAM District 751

The drama over the Boeing 777X jet has claimed its first casualty.

Tom Wroblewski, president of the Machinists Union District Lodge 751, announced on Tuesday night that he is retiring to a small group of elected representatives from local lodges. His last day is Jan. 31.

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Transportation
9:39 am
Wed January 15, 2014

King County Leaders: Raise Taxes To Pay For Buses, Roads

From left, King County Councilmembers Rod Dembowski, Larry Phillips, Jane Hague and Joe McDermott prepare for a press conference. The poster behind them lists targeted bus routes.
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Political leaders in King County want voters to help stave off drastic cuts to Metro bus service.

On Tuesday, King County Executive Dow Constantine proposed raising car tab fees, sales taxes and bus fares. The money would pay for transit service and road maintenance.

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EarthFix Reports
9:16 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Can Bikes And Orchards Coexist?

Jan Dappen rides along Wenatchee's Apple Capital Recreation Loop. The success of this loop encouraged cyclists to try to designate a more ambitious route from Wenatchee to Leavenworth. Local orchardists are fighting the designation.
WenatcheeOutdoors.org http://www.WenatcheeOutdoors.org/

Originally published on Wed January 15, 2014 1:00 am

The valley between Wenatchee and Leavenworth, Wash., is known for its fruit orchards. Apple, pear, and cherry trees line the county roads. In the springtime, blossomed branches reach out from tidy orchard rows.

You can glimpse the orchards from U.S. Highway 2, the most direct route between the two cities. But the most scenic way winds along 48 miles of county roads, up and down hills and across the Wenatchee River.

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Radioactive Waste
9:05 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Hanford Contractor Fails To Check Radioactive Tanks For Months

Tobin Fricke Wikimedia

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:09 pm

For eight months, a federal contractor at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation failed to check some single-shell radioactive waste tanks for the buildup of hydrogen gas.

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Politics
9:01 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Washington Governor Calls For Higher Minimum Wage, Teacher COLAs

Members of the Washington legislature and guests in the gallery stand for the Washington State Patrol Honor Guard prior to Governor Jay Inslee’s State of the State address.
Taylor Winkel Northwest News Network

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:30 pm

Washington Governor Jay Inslee introduced key policy proposals in his State of the State speech Tuesday. 

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Transportation
8:51 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Oregon Lawmakers Want More Answers On I-5 Bridge Plan

An artist's rendition of the proposed 1-5 bridge over the Columbia River.
Columbia River Crossing

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 5:30 pm

Oregon lawmakers say they want more answers before they'll agree to proceed with a plan to build a new I-5 bridge across the Columbia River.

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Hint: Not Here
7:51 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Where In The World Is The Best Place For Healthy Eating?

The U.K. has plenty of fresh produce available, such as these vegetables on display at a garden show in Southport, England. But these healthy options cost more in the U.K. than in any other country in Western Europe.
Christopher Furlong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 1:03 pm

The Dutch are known for their lax drug laws, tall statures and proficient language skills.

Perhaps we should add stellar eating habits to that list, as well.

The Netherlands ranked as the easiest country in the world in which to find a balanced, nutritious diet, the advocacy group Oxfam reported Tuesday.

France and Switzerland shared the second slot. And Western Europe nearly swept the top 20 positions, with Australia just edging into a tie for 8th.

Where did the U.S. land?

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Gifts
12:37 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Weird Stuff World Leaders Give Each Other

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry holds up a pair of Idaho potatoes as a gift for Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, standing right, at the start of their meeting at the U.S. Ambassador's residence in Paris on Monday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:33 pm

You say potato, John Kerry says let's give it to Russia.

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DREAM Act
11:06 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Washington House Re-Passes College Aid For Immigrant Students

Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos (left) and Rep. Larry Haler.
Washington Legislature

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 10:50 am

It wasn’t all pomp and circumstance on Monday. The opening day of the Washington Legislature included something rare for day one: a floor vote.

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Aerospace
10:57 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Battery Smokes – Again

After nearly a year of no problems with its batteries, a Boeing 787 battery started smoking on Tuesday.
Credit Boeing Photo

Japan Airlines has yet again grounded one of its Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets after the plane's lithium ion battery started smoking.

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Sochi Olympics
10:30 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Northwest Ski Towns Stock Olympic Teams Well Beyond USA

Both Olympic hopefuls racing for the U.S. Virgin Islands have Sun Valley ties. Jasmine Campbell (on left) is most likely to receive the one slot in Sochi allocated to the U.S territory. Sun Valley Ski Academy graduate (2013) Veronica Gaspar on right.
John Campbell

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 9:32 am

Next month, Sochi, Russia will host athletes from more than 85 nations at the Winter Olympics. Some of those countries might surprise you. They get no snow or have no mountains.

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Marijuana Farming
9:55 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Yakama Tribes Take Pot Stand On Traditional Lands

File photo of a of a cannabis plant.
Wikimedia

Originally published on Mon January 13, 2014 5:50 pm

Leaders of the Yakama Nation in central Washington say they see little benefit to sales or farming of legalized marijuana on their traditional lands.

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Light Rail
9:22 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Businesses Worry About Broadway Construction

The Annapurna Cafe, where the sidewalk ends on Broadway
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

Correction 1/15/2013: This story has been changed to reflect that construction has  eliminated a center turn lane, not reduced the lanes from four to two as originally stated.

A previous version of this story also incorrectly said construction on all of the projects would take another three years. The current lane closures are scheduled to end in December, Sound Transit expects the Capitol Hill light rail station construction to be complete by spring 2015, and the First Hill streetcar is expected to be operating by the middle of 2014. Work on the First Hill streetcar started affecting Broadway in April of 2012. The story below has been corrected.

For many of us, years of light rail construction on Broadway has been a traffic headache. But some small business owners along Capitol Hill's main street worry that ongoing construction could force them to shut their doors.

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Technology
7:15 am
Tue January 14, 2014

How Seattle's Bid For Faster, Cheaper Internet Fell Apart

CondoInternet is expanding broadband through Fremont to Ballard.
Credit Courtesy of CondoInternet

Network engineer Lee Kirk was working for Comcast when a friend of his tried to hire him away to Gigabit Squared Seattle for a partnership between the company and the city to improve Internet service in the area.

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EarthFix Analysis
6:00 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Few Railcars Carrying Flammable Oil Get Inspected

A small percentage of trains carrying hazardous materials are inspected as they move through Oregon and Washington. Safety advocates and legislators are more concerned about what federal regulations allow than the fewer than 1 percent of cars found with safety violations.
Credit Flickr Photo/Russ Allison

As we researched a recent story about train shipments of oil, we asked Washington and Oregon officials: How many of the trains coming through the Northwest are inspected?

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