State Budget Crisis
7:04 am
Wed December 15, 2010

Gregoire would consolidate state agencies, commissions

Governor Chris Gregoire is proposing to consolidate 12 state agencies and in the process eliminate 125 jobs. It’s part of her plan to reduce the size and, what she calls, “complexity” of Washington state government. The state faces  a $4.6 billion gap between anticipated revenues and spending in the next two year budget.

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Food for Thought
6:01 am
Wed December 15, 2010

Nancy's French Adventures

Nancy Leson is home from her KPLU Travel Club trip to France, full of stories, tales of tastings, and the trials of rich food.
Paul Stankavich/KPLU

Seattle Times Food Writer Nancy Leson is back from her KPLU Travel Club trip to Paris, where she ate…and ate…and, well, you get the idea.  

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Washington State Patrol
3:54 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

Slow down for emergency vehicles

This Washington State Patrol car was smashed while responding to a roadside incident.
WSP

Slow down and move over.  That’s the message from the Washington State Patrol as a new law goes into effect.  It’s meant to better protect troopers and emergency workers who handle car accidents.  

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Public Health
3:40 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

Whooping cough hits Tacoma elementary school

A whooping cough outbreak at an elementary school in north Tacoma has sickened at least six children.  Investigators are looking into additional cases. 

The disease, also known as pertussis, can cause serious illness in young children, especially infants.  More than one-third of infants less than one year old who get the disease must be hospitalized, according to the Tacoma - Pierce County Health Department.  

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New Laws
3:37 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

Alarms required to detect carbon monoxide in homes

If your home has smoke detectors, that’s an important safety step.  Starting in January, new homes, and existing homes that are sold, also need to have a carbon monoxide detector.   A new state law requires the sensors to prevent accidental poisonings. 

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Public Health
12:35 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

State ranks high in disaster response - for now

A Seattle Fire Department ladder unit responds to an emergency in the Belltown neighborhood last week. The state is getting kudos for its overall emergency and disaster response efforts in protecting public health.
Gary Davis/KPLU

Washington gets a top grade for being ready to handle disasters. A new study ranks the state among the most adept a wide variety of public health threats, from flood response, handling disease outbreak, and reacting to chemical spills, among other emergencies. But the report warns gains in emergency preparedness could be lost to budget cuts. 

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News Roundup
7:39 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Tuesday morning's headlines

A road sign down near Stanwood in Snohomish County.
Twitpic/KING5unit9

Overnight storm knocks out power to tens of thousands, flooding rivers are receding, video of a water rescue near Everett, and rail commuters get a reprieve.

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Winter Weather
7:08 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Seattle preparing for next snowstorm

A man steps lightly on the compact ice and snow that settled on Seattle's streets during the November 22, 2010 snow storm. This is University Street in the First Hill neighborhood.
Gary Davis/KPLU

You may be drying out from the weekend rain storms. But city officials in Seattle are thinking about snow.  They’re learning lessons from the snowstorm in November that turned roads into ice rinks and made for paralyzing commutes.

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Alaskan Way Viaduct
5:50 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Seattle Mayor Still Questions Tunnel

Early concept of proposed bored tunnel's south portal
Courtesy WSDOT

The Seattle Mayor is continuing to question plans to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a tunnel.  This follows last week’s announcement from the state that the contractor could finish the project under budget and ahead of schedule. 

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Money Matters
1:46 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Pointing out resistance points

echiner1 at flickr.com

Ever wonder why the stock market rises to a certain level and then pulls back?  That’s called a resistance point.  Financial commentator Greg Heberlein explains it to KPLU’s Dave Meyer on this week’s Money Matters.

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KPLU Christmas Jam
8:25 pm
Mon December 13, 2010

Relive the 2010 KPLU Christmas Jam concert

Gail Pettis and Dr. David Deacon-Joyner perform the classic holiday duet, "Baby It's Cold Outside," during the 14th-Annual KPLU Christmas Jam on December 9, 2010.
Justin Steyer KPLU

The 14th-Annual KPLU Christmas Jam, our much-anticipated annual free holiday concert and live broadcast, was held on the Pacific Lutheran University campus on December 9, 2010.

This year we featured acclaimed jazz vocalist Gail Pettis, as well as the PLU Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Robert Miller. They performed classic holiday favorites from "This Christmas" to "Baby It's Cold Outside," and closed the program with an audience sing-along of "White Christmas."

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State Budget Crisis
6:12 pm
Mon December 13, 2010

Pension reform proposals shock some retirees

About 90,000 Washington state retirees have been getting annual cost of living increases during the great recession. Now Governor Chris Gregoire says it’s time to halt to those automatic raises. The proposal is already generating an angry response. 

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Pineapple Express
5:50 pm
Mon December 13, 2010

Landslide risk high, state asks public's help

This Twitter-shared photo is of trees downed by a mudslide along the Burke Gilman trail in the northeast Seattle neighborhood of Lake City, Monday, Dec 13, 2010.
Twitpic/JonRepp

The heavy rains dumped by the Pineapple Express have caused so many landslides, the state is asking your help in keeping track of them. 

The National Weather Service reports 29 major landslides since Friday. 

Washington's Department of Natural Resources reports the slides have damaged roads, houses, and power lines across western Washington, and portions of the Burke-Gilman trail in Seattle. 

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State Budget Crisis
9:59 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Lawmakers take bite out of $1.1B shortfall in special session

Lawmakers hope they’ve taken a sizeable bite out of the state’s one-point-one billion dollar budget shortfall. The legislature met Saturday in what’s been called an unprecedented December special session. Governor Chris Gregoire demanded the lame-duck meeting saying she couldn’t solve the problem alone.

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Artscape
9:27 am
Mon December 13, 2010

At MOHAI, it's all about the purse

One of hundreds of purses on display at Seattle's Museum of History and Industry
Courtesy of MOHAI

I’m one of those people who carries a bulging, heavy handbag, crammed with so much stuff that I can’t always find my cellphone. But heavy or not, it’s my attempt at making a fashon statement. It’s the color of a tangerine.

Walk into the galleries at Seattle’s Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI)and it’s impossible not to size up your purse.

Over here, from the '30s, a bag made out of Bakelite is the color of butterscotch. And from the 1990s, stylish Prada and Kate Spade bags.

There’s a century’s worth of purses, made out of sealskin, clam shells, cantaloupe seeds, even cigarette wrappers and aluminum can tabs. Purses meant to be worn under clothes or proudly shown off.

And purses from the turn of the century that weren’t even meant for one’s arm.

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