Austin Jenkins

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. He regularly files stories for NPR News. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin was a freelance general assignment reporter at KING–TV, the NBC affiliate in Seattle. He also worked as a freelance education reporter for KPLU–FM, the Tacoma–based NPR station. Austin spent 2001 in Washington, D.C. as a Knight Foundation/American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow. Austin has also worked as a television reporter in Portland, Oregon; Boise, Idaho; Casper, Wyoming; and Bozeman, Montana. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and has a B.A. in Government from Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut.

Over the years Austin has won numerous professional awards for his reporting. He lives in Olympia with his wife Jennifer Huntley and their two children.

Read Austin's blog, "The Washington Ledge: Dispatches From Olympia."

With a third special session underway, the Washington House and Senate plan to vote sometime Monday on a two-year budget.

If you have plans to visit a Washington State Park over the Fourth of July, Washington Gov. Inslee has a message for you.

“You’ll be able to go that park next weekend,” Inslee said. “I wouldn’t tell you that if I didn’t believe it was going to happen.”

Republican state lawmaker Maureen Walsh of Walla Walla, Washington, is celebrating Friday’s Supreme Court ruling that legalized gay marriage nationwide.

Washington lawmakers still have time to get a budget deal and avert a partial government shutdown July 1.

The state of Washington has sent email alerts to 26,000 state employees notifying them of temporary layoff.

Washington House Democrats are moving forward with a plan to eliminate several tax exemptions, but they don’t yet have buy-in from Senate Republicans.

There’s still no budget deal in Olympia, but Washington House Democrats said Friday they’re willing to drop their push for a state capital gains tax.

Washington lawmakers have until the 30-day special session runs out on June 27 to reach a budget deal. If they fail to do so, a partial government shutdown would begin on July 1.

Former Washington state Rep. Susan Fagan has agreed to reimburse taxpayers after filing false expense reports.

If Washington lawmakers don’t have a budget by the end of the month, state government will shut down. But it would only be a partial shutdown.

The Washington state Department of Corrections recently signed a contract with the GEO Group to send up to 1000 inmates to Michigan.

Accused criminals in Washington could be required to pay thousands of dollars for drug and alcohol monitoring while they await trial.

It’s not just Washington state agencies that are preparing for a possible government shutdown on July 1. Washington House and Senate administrators will meet Wednesday to discuss contingency planning.

A man sentenced to decades in prison for the shotgun slaying of a Spokane pizza delivery driver won’t go free -- at least for now.

Budget negotiators continue to meet at the Washington capitol, but there’s still no deal on a spending plan for the next two years.

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