A House committee in Olympia will hear public testimony Wednesday for a bill that would abolish capital punishment in Washington. House Bill 1504 would eliminate the death penalty in favor of life without parole.
KUOW has learned that the U.S. Department of Education has launched an investigation into discipline rates in Seattle Public Schools. In an email, agency spokesman Jim Bradshaw told KUOW that its Office for Civil Rights is looking into whether black students in Seattle are disciplined "more frequently and more harshly" than white students for the same infractions.
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Efforts to get gun rights leaders in Washington to support -- or at least not oppose -- universal background checks appear to have hit a stumbling block. At issue is a state database that tracks pistol sales. Second Amendment advocates want it shut down, but the state’s sheriffs and police chiefs say it’s a vital law enforcement tool.
The first members of Washington state’s new Charter School Commission are due to be appointed Wednesday. The commission will be able to approve some of the 40 charter schools allowed under the law voters passed last fall.
Both of King County’s death penalty cases are on hold pending appeal to the Washington Supreme Court. A key issue in both cases is whether the defendants have experienced any hardships that should have required prosecutors to be more lenient.
The King County Housing Authority has stopped issuing new Section 8 vouchers. The program is federally subsidized through the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The move is a result of the impending reduction in those funds due to sequestration.
Today marks yet another sink-or-swim deadline for bills in the state Legislature to make it out of committee. Which ones have the best chance of survival? It’s all part of our end-of-the-week update with reporters Austin Jenkins and Tom Banse. They will cover everything from sick leave, to education reform, to the State Supreme Court’s recent ruling that lawmakers should only need a simple majority vote to raise taxes.
Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 5:45 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Raising taxes in Washington just got a whole lot easier. The state Supreme Court Thursday threw out the requirement that tax increases muster a two-thirds vote of the legislature. Democrats say the ruling will allow more options as lawmakers grapple with ongoing budget woes. But Republicans vow to uphold the will of voters who have repeatedly supported a high bar for tax hikes.
Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 5:00 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the two-thirds requirement for tax hikes is a personal defeat for initiative activist Tim Eyman. Over the years, he sponsored three of the five ballot measures that enacted the supermajority rule.
Outside the Capitol after the ruling, reporters noted that Eyman seemed more subdued than defiant.
Halfway through the enrollment season for Washington's Guaranteed Tuition Savings program, the number of new enrollments is lagging compared to the last two years. Consumer confidence in the program is slipping, at least for now, even as state lawmakers express their concerns about the $600 million shortfall in the program.
The Washington Supreme Court threw out the voter passed initiative requiring a two-thirds vote of the Legislature to pass higher taxes. The supermajority law has had a heavy influence on state government for 30 years. Ross Reynolds talks to lawmakers and lawyers about what this decision means for politics in Washington state.
A state ethics board has fined the former state Department of Corrections communications director for violations. The board determined that Belinda Stewart used state time and resources to run corrections oriented nonprofits.