A long-standing state law in Washington gives working mothers up to 24 weeks off when they have babies. If you didn’t know, you must not have read the poster in your break room at work. You know, the one everyone is always leaning over and squinting at to find out what their rights are.
Watch out for scammers. That’s Seattle Housing Authority’s warning to people who are going online this week to apply for the city’s Section 8 housing lottery. Agency officials caution that some misleading sites have been set up to trick people into submitting their personal information to the wrong place.
Former gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna supported charter schools, and some are arguing that his grand old party is leading the way on education reform while democrats in Olympia simply tout old policy. Ross Reynolds talks with Tacoma News Tribune columnist Peter Callaghan.
Seattle Public Schools Superintendent José Banda directed administrators at Garfield High School to give the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test Tuesday despite a mass boycott by the school’s teachers.
On Wednesday, hundreds of immigrants and advocates plan to gather in Olympia to lay out their priorities for lawmakers. One top issue is called the Washington Dream Act, which state Senator Ed Murray, D-Seattle, introduced today. Under the measure, undocumented college students would become eligible for state financial aid.
Yesterday Ross talked to the Republican Senate chair of the Early Learning and K-12 Education committee. Today he follows up with Democratic State Senator Rosemary McAuliffe. How do Republicans and Democrats differ in their goals and strategies for improving state education?
Originally published on Mon February 4, 2013 3:46 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Card-holding medical marijuana patients would get protection from arrest under a proposal in the Washington legislature. But some industry insiders say it doesn’t go far enough. That was their message Monday at a state Senate hearing.
By the end of this year, the production and use of recreational marijuana in Washington will be regulated and taxed. That’s because of voter-approved Initiative 502. But medical marijuana – also voter-approved back in 1998 – is largely unregulated.
President Obama thinks E-Verify should be mandatory as part of his plan for immigration reform. Is this a good idea? How accurate is E-Verify? What happens if someone comes up negative? Is immigration contacted immediately? Ross Reynolds talks with CEO Roy Beck of Numbers USA, and Policy Analyst David Bier.
Big changes to US immigration policy could mean more temporary work visas for people with skills like computer programming. Employers in the Northwest including Microsoft say there aren’t enough US workers to meet demand. Now, a bipartisan group of Senators wants to expand the number of temporary worker visas from 65,000 to 115,000. But critics say those jobs can and should be filled by qualified US workers. Ross Reynolds talks with public policy advocate and political strategist Maria Cardona and president of the Programmers Guild, Kim Berry about the ongoing issue of temporary worker visas.
Washington state is under a state Supreme Court mandate to adequately fund K-12 education. But Democrats and Republican disagree over increasing funding versus guaranteeing the money is used well. Ross Reynolds talks with Republican State Senator Steve Litzow who chairs the Early Learning and K-12 Education committee about what is being done to fund K-12 education.
As part of the agreement with the Department of Justice to implement reforms in the Seattle Police Department, Mayor Mike McGinn proposed the creation of a Community Police Commission. The 13-member commission, selected by the mayor and City Council, is supposed to ensure that the police are acting lawfully and safely.
The commission still has to be confirmed by the City Council, but Ross Reynolds sits down with commission co-chair and deputy director of the Defender Association, Lisa Daugaard, to discuss what the commission can and hopes to accomplish.
A proposed bill in Olympia aims to crack down on employers who shortchange their workers. The measure would create harsher penalties for business that skimp on minimum wage, overtime pay, or just flat out fail to hand over a paycheck.
This type of underpayment is often referred to as “wage theft.” Advocates of the bill, HB 1440, say the victims of wage theft tend to be low-income workers and undocumented immigrants.
Originally published on Thu January 31, 2013 5:51 pm
RICHLAND, Wash. – The state of Washington’s largest public sector embezzlement case ever moves forward Thursday with a guilty plea. A public works employee admits he took the money over more than 20 years in Franklin County in the southeast part of the state.
Sound Transit has been under fire lately for poor budgeting, rider shortages and even for train interruptions due to mud slides. The regional transit provider is the force behind Link light rail in Seattle and Tacoma and the Sounder train, which stretches from Lakewood through Seattle and up to Everett. Their express-bus system serves passengers in King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties. Today Ross talks to Sound Transit Executive Director Joni Earl to find out what the future holds for our regional trains and buses.