It’s almost a year before the 2013 general election, but the race for Seattle mayor continues to draw a crowd. Former Seattle City Councilman Peter Steinbrueck held a press conference Wednesday morning to formally announce his candidacy.
To many people, the holidays are about family tradition. Tradition is what brings Barry Ford and his wife, Shirley Babilya, to Seattle every December. They drive their RV across country from Iowa to do a job they love in the town where Ford grew up.
This year, the couple is 1,849 miles apart. Shirley is home in Iowa recovering from a heart attack and Barry is on his own in Seattle this season. When some Seattle neighbors found out, they stepped in to help fill the void.
Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 5:23 pm
When Governor Chris Gregoire leaves office in January, she’ll take with her nearly a quarter-century’s worth of expertise on one of the most contaminated places on earth. Cleanup of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation has been one of her top priorities. Before Gregoire was governor, she worked on Hanford issues as the state’s attorney general and before that as ecology director.
Gregoire knows cleaning up Hanford is no easy task. She’s been involved longer than many of the top federal site managers. And despite all of the problems and complexities she’s still optimistic.
Originally published on Wed December 19, 2012 3:56 pm
The U.S. Army announced Wednesday that Staff Sgt. Robert Bales will face a general court-martial on 16 counts of premeditated murder and other charges. If convicted, the maximum penalty is death. The decision follows a pretrial hearing last month.
An attorney for Bales says she's "disappointed" by the Army's decision to seek the death penalty against the Washington-based soldier accused of massacring Afghan villagers in March.
Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 5:37 pm
COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho - The protected status of a small population of reindeer in the Northwest is getting a second look. Snowmobilers and an Idaho county that depends on winter snow sports petitioned the government to delist the animal.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agreed to do a status review on woodland caribou in the Selkirk Mountains of Idaho and Washington. They’re part of a larger herd from Canada.
Originally published on Wed December 12, 2012 5:29 pm
GLENEDEN BEACH, Ore. - It goes without saying that the Pacific Ocean is vast. So it may come as a surprise to hear the sea described as "crowded." Perhaps even too crowded to make room for the nascent industry of wave and tidal energy. Taxpayers and investors have pumped tens of millions of dollars into finding ways to turn the ocean's power into electricity. In recent weeks, high stakes negotiations to identify wave energy sites on the Oregon Coast are finally getting somewhere.
Scientists will soon head to the Olympic coast to evaluate a dock that washed ashore in a remote section of Olympic National Park. It could be debris from last year’s tsunami in Japan. It might even be as big as the gigantic piece of debris that showed up on Oregon’s coast in June. That dock weighed 188 tons.
Dave Workman with the Washington state Marine Debris Task Force tells KUOW’s Sara Lerner scientists need to see if invasive species might be hitching a ride on the dock. They also need to figure out how to remove it.
SALEM, Ore. – The state of Oregon is at odds with the federal government over how to use money from Japan meant for cleaning up tsunami debris. It can’t be used to reimburse the state for money it’s already spent.
The Japanese government donated $5 million to the US this fall to help pay for the cost of cleaning up debris from last year’s deadly tsunami. But Oregon hasn't seen a penny of that money so far.
Washington Governor Chris Gregoire proposed a new wholesale vehicle fuel tax Tuesday that you might notice at the gas pump. The governor said the move will help the state support education by helping cover the costs of getting kids to school.
Currently, school districts help pay for students' transportation needs, but a recent court ruling says state government is not doing enough to support education. That includes education-related transportation.
The change — which was posted in dense legalese on its website Monday — sparked users to vow to stop posting their color-filtered, tilt-shifted photos to Instagram.
Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 4:20 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. - Outgoing Washington Governor Chris Gregoire is proposing to extend two temporary taxes for three-and-a-half years in order to make a $1 billion down payment on a recent Supreme Court ruling that found the state is not adequately funding public schools. Much of that new money would go to reduce K-2 class sizes, speed up the phase-in of all-day kindergarten and help districts with basic operating and maintenance costs.
Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 2:07 pm
A massive fire that burned 61 homes in Central Washington was likely caused by Department of Transportation contractors. That’s the upshot of a report issued Monday by Washington’s Department of Natural Resources.
The aptly named Taylor Bridge Fire started August 13 right after transportation contractors did some welding work on that bridge. It happened near the mountain town of Cle Elum.
In less than 10 months, Washington state will launch its own health exchange as part of the Affordable Care Act. The exchange will be an online marketplace where people can buy health insurance with the help of a navigator.
Some say it will be like Expedia for health plans, and this has some insurance brokers worried. Many fear it will have a negative impact on their livelihood, just like Expedia removed the need for travel agents.
Suicide is now the number one cause of death for US troops. Nationally, more than two-thirds of suicides of active duty troops involve firearms. Most are personal weapons.
Former vice chief of staff for the Army General Peter Chiarelli wants commanders to have the ability to talk to distressed troop members about their private weapons as part of an effort to reverse the trend.
Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 9:31 am
RICHLAND, Wash. – We’ve heard a lot about whistleblowers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington. Some workers there have gone public with serious concerns about how the government is cleaning up radioactive waste.
But this story is about a different kind of Hanford Whistleblower.
Every Sunday evening at 7:15 p.m. sharp, Chris Doran welcomes several Hanford Whistleblowers into his book-filled home. His wife Nancy brings out the tea and homemade baked goods. They sit and chat politely. And then, they start to play.