Government

The Summit Inn on Seattle's Capitol Hill still hums with artists, even after losing many tenants in the wake of the building's sale last December. The remaining tenants expect to be kicked out this fall for renovations.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

On the top floor of the Summit Inn, a run-down building on Capitol Hill where artists live, Philomel Swango, 64, shows off bolts of colorful cloth and talks about the costumes she sews for a living.

"I just did a pirate wedding," she says. "I made the bride’s dress. I made it look like she mugged Marie Antoinette."

Styrofoam would leave many Oregon school cafeterias under a bill that passed the House of Representatives Wednesday. Lawmakers voted 47 to 10 to phase out plastic foam by 2021. School districts that aren't sure they can make that deadline can get state permission to take longer.

The bill's sponsor, Rep. Rob Nosse, D-Portland, credits students at Sunnyside Environmental School who first advocated a ban on plastic foam in public schools.

A wide majority of the Washington Legislature voted to raise the maximum speed limit from 70 to 75 miles per hour.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee said he doesn’t approve of one-day walkouts by teachers, but the Democrat also said he understands their frustration over pay raises and class size.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee used Earth Day to chastise state lawmakers for their environmental record.

Who'll replace former Seattle City Council member Sally Clark?
Flickr Photo/WSDOT (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman speaks with political analyst C.R. Douglas about the eight finalists for a short-term Seattle City Council seat. (The full list, in alphabetical order: Jan Drago, Noel Frame, Sharon Lee, John Okomoto, Sharon Maeda, David Moseley, Sheley Secrest and Alec Stephens.) One will be appointed April 27.

Sunday marks the 105th and final day of the Washington Legislature’s regular session. At this point a special session appears inevitable because House Democrats and Senate Republicans are nowhere near to agreeing on an operating budget for the next two years. Here are five things to know about the 2015 Washington legislature.

Call it the timeshare rule. Washington lawmakers can accept free tickets to this summer’s U.S. Open golf championship -- if they attend a three-hour tour and seminar.

Budget negotiations have stalled with just a few days left in the Washington legislature’s 105-day session. The clock runs out on Sunday.

Flickr Photo/Justin Grimes (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks with Estevan Munoz-Howard of Honest Elections Seattle about Seattle Initiative 122. If it makes the November ballot, voters would be asked to approve a property tax hike to pay for an election reform package that includes giving voters vouchers worth $100 to donate to their favorite candidates.

Marcie Sillman talks to State Treasurer Jim McIntire about his proposal for a state income tax and overhaul of our current tax system to raise enough revenue to cover the state budget. 

Employees at Ike's Pot Shop in Seattle's Central District sell marijuana products on their opening day, Sept. 30, 2014.
KUOW Photo/Posey Gruener

Marcie Sillman talks with Alison Holcomb, the principle author of Initiative 522, about where lawmakers plan to spend the pot revenue.

Replacement parts for King County's emergency radio system won't be available after 2018, County Council member Joe McDermott says.
Flickr Photo/Bryan Jones (CC-BY-NC-ND)

King County's aging emergency radio system is facing crunch time: After 2018, replacement components won't be available.

So the county is proposing a replacement and asking voters to pay for it in a special election April 28. Boosting the existing property-tax levy would generate an estimated $273 million to pay for the upgrade, the county says.

Firefighters, police or paramedics responding to a crisis depend on reliable radios. Seattle’s new fire chief, Harold Scoggins, pointed to the communication problems that hampered first responders’ efforts during the 9-11 attacks.

Washington lawmakers are poised to put an additional $1.3 billion to $1.4 billion into public schools over the next two years.

A gorilla at Port Lympne Wild Animal Park.
Flickr Photo/Willard (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Ross Reynolds talks to Dr. Kathryn Gillespie, a lecturer and member of the University of Washington's critical animal studies working group about the case against zoos. 

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