News

North Korea Prisoner
1:34 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Kenneth Bae And Mom Embrace In Tearful North Korea Hospital Reunion

Kenneth Bae, right, an American man detained in North Korea for the past 11 months, and his mother Myunghee Bae met at the Pyongyang hospital where Bae has been receiving care.
Credit AP Photo/The Choson Sinbo, Mun Kwang Son

When Myunghee Bae stepped into the hospital room in North Korea on Friday, she wept as she embraced her son.

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Maritime Law
1:14 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Luxury Yachts Steer Clear Of Washington State Taxes

Serene has been at Pier 90 in Seattle since August 18.
Flickr Photo/Drewski2112

A 440-foot superyacht named Serene is approaching a deadline date with Washington’s tax authorities.

If it cruises through that deadline by staying longer than 60 days, its owners will have to pay 10 percent of the yacht’s value, which is $30 million. 

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Shutdown Activities
12:49 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

NOAA Continues Only Essential Work In Seattle: Feeding The Fish

Access to the NOAA Sandpoint facility in Seattle is restricted to a skeleton crew of employees who are considered essential.
KUOW Photo/Audrey Carlsen

Paychecks and research have come to a halt at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Seattle due to the partial government shutdown. Some NOAA researchers have been given special dispensation to come in to work only to feed the fish and invertebrates they study.

Morale at NOAA is pretty low for the skeleton crew that continues to come in to forecast the weather. So on Thursday they held a potluck to raise their spirits, serving up dishes with names like sequester quencher soda and filibuster parfait.

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Mental Health
8:00 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Assaults Are "Constant Disruption" At State Mental Hospitals

The main entrance of Western State Hospital in Lakewood, Wash.
John Ryan KUOW

Violence is a “constant disruption” at the state’s two main psychiatric hospitals, according to a new report jointly commissioned by The Department of Social and Health Services and the SEIU Healthcare 1199NW union that represents much of the front-line staff at the hospitals. 

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Nobel Peace Prize
7:41 am
Fri October 11, 2013

What You Need To Know About The Group That Won The Nobel

U.N. chemical weapons experts carry samples collected on Aug. 28 from a site of an alleged chemical weapons attack near the Syrian capital Damascus. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which is dismantling Syria's chemical weapons stockpile, was awarded the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 8:40 am

The Norwegian Nobel Committee on Friday awarded the 2013 peace prize to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, a group that's only recently been thrust into the spotlight as it works to dismantle Syria's chemical program.

The OPCW, which is based at the Hague, was established in 1997 and now has an annual budget of $100 million and a staff of about 500 people. Here's a profile of the group.

Where is the OPCW working?

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Nuclear Waste
9:18 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Radioactive Hanford Sludge Ages as Feds To Miss More Deadlines

A tank farm at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation
US Department of Energy

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 11:56 am

Washington officials say they’re disappointed but not surprised by news that the federal government likely will miss several more cleanup deadlines at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. 

At Hanford, radioactive sludge stews in aging underground tanks not far from the Columbia River. A 1989 agreement created the timeline for treating that caustic gunk. But the task has proven extremely difficult: A waste treatment plant has been plagued by whistleblowers, critical federal investigations, cost overruns and delays.

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Gun Regulation
9:17 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Wash. Gun Background Check Supporters Submit Petitions

Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 4:16 pm

Sponsors of an initiative to require universal background checks for gun sales in Washington have submitted 250,000 petition signatures. That’s the minimum needed to put the measure before the legislature in January.

If lawmakers fail to act, voters would see it on the ballot a year from now.

Supporters of Initiative 594 cheered as boxes of petitions were rolled into the Washington Secretary of State’s office.

Wheeling the cart was Cheryl Stumbo. She’s a survivor of the 2006 Jewish Federation shooting in Seattle.

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Swimming With Fishes
9:17 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Tacoma Aquarium Lets Visitors Dive With Sharks

Scuba divers rest on the bottom of the South Pacific exhibit at Point Defiance Zoo
Ingrid Barrentine Point Defiance Zoo

Originally published on Thu October 17, 2013 2:39 pm

Beginning this Friday, an aquarium in Tacoma, Wash., will let paying visitors dive in a shark-infested tank. That's right. The Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium has built a dive cage in a tank that is home to 17 sharks. Experienced scuba divers can even swim out into the center of the pool. We sent correspondent Tom Banse to get to the bottom of this story.

Ah, the things you might question there's high demand for. Well, more than four hundred people have already made reservations to take a dip in a tank full of sharks. 

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Elections 2013
8:57 am
Thu October 10, 2013

McGinn, Murray Revive Tunnel Feud In TV Debate

Screen shot of Mayor Mike McGinn and State Senator Ed Murray in their first televised debate of the Seattle mayor's race

In their first televised debate on KING5 TV, Mayor Mike McGinn and State Senator Ed Murray engaged in a sharp but mostly civil exchange over housing, transportation, and police reform, among other things. 

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Border To Border Drugs, Part Four
8:56 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Law Enforcement, Truckers Try To Keep Ahead Of Smugglers

Nicholas McVicker

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 3:31 pm

For drug smugglers, getting a truckload of illegal narcotics past border authorities means potentially huge profits.

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GMO Labeling
3:52 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Report: GMO Foods Don't Appear Harmful But Need Monitoring

With a vote on whether Washington should require labeling of genetically modified foods fast approaching, Washington lawmakers turned to the Washington State Academy of Sciences to learn more about GMOs and their possible impact.

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Border To Border Drugs, Part Three
11:41 am
Wed October 9, 2013

San Diego Is Biggest Entry Point For Mexican Meth

Jill Replogle Fronteras

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 4:22 pm

More than 70 percent of methamphetamine illegally trafficked into the U.S. passes through U.S.-Mexico border crossings in the San Diego area. That’s despite laws in both countries designed to crack down on the drug.

Customs and Border Protection agents at the San Ysidro Port of Entry face a tough balancing act. Facilitating international trade and travel on the one hand. On the other, trying to stop drugs and other illegal cargo from getting into the U.S.

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Elections 2013
8:27 am
Wed October 9, 2013

Wash. Governor Undecided On GMO Initiative

Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 2:09 pm

It’s the hottest issue on Washington’s fall ballot: an initiative to require labeling of genetically engineered foods. But Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, says he hasn’t decided how he’ll vote on Initiative 522.

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Hiring Discrimination
8:27 am
Wed October 9, 2013

Fixing Bonneville Power Hiring Mess A 'Monumental' Task

US Army Corps of Engineers

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 5:01 pm

A final inspector general's report released Tuesday condemns the Bonneville Power Administration for discriminating against veterans and other applicants during jobs hires.

Bonneville is this region's biggest wholesale electricity and transmission provider. 

BPA issued a contrite response to the scathing report from the U.S. Energy Department's inspector general.

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Public Safety
6:17 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Water Main Break Shoots Up 20-Foot Geyser Near University Village

A water main break from a 16-inch pipe caused a 20-foot geyser near the University Village mall.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

A large water pipe next to the University Village mall, just east of the University of Washington, erupted Tuesday afternoon, shooting a 20-foot geyser into the air and shutting down traffic at the start of rush hour.

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