Education
5:01 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Deadline Looms For Voter Initiative To Make Wash. Class Sizes Smaller

File image
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

Supporters of a statewide ballot initiative directing Washington lawmakers to provide enough funding to drastically decrease K-12 class sizes are confident they've gathered enough signatures to send their measure to voters in November.

More than 320,000 people have signed petitions to put Initiative 1351 on the ballot this fall, Class Size Counts campaign manager Mary Howes said Monday. The number is well over the required 246,000 valid signatures, which must be turned into the secretary of state's office by Thursday. 

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Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
3:49 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Wash. State Task Force Starts Work On New Drone Regulations

In this undated photo provided by AeroVironment, a man hand-launches a Puma drone aricraft.
AeroVironment AP Photo

Imagine looking out your window to see a drone hovering outside. That happened earlier this month to a partially-dressed Seattle women who was startled and outraged.

That incident came up Monday as a Washington state task force convened for the first time to develop privacy rules for drones — something Oregon and Idaho have already done. The task force quickly narrowed its focus to use of drones by government agencies.

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Crime Rates
2:52 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Spokane, Seattle Among U.S. Auto Theft Hot Spots

Graphic based on ranking by the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
Kevin Mooney

In what Northwest city is your car most likely to be stolen? According to a new insurance industry report, the answer is Spokane, Washington.

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Prisoner Of War
8:40 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Would-Be Day Of Celebration In Bergdahl’s Hometown Passes Quietly

This tree was one of four planted for an event last year in Bowe Bergdahl’s hometown. The trees marked his then four years in captivity.
Jessica Robinson

A day of planned celebration of Bowe Bergdahl in his Idaho hometown turned out to be a pretty uneventful one. Hailey, Idaho cancelled Saturday’s event after the city received threats.

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Disability Rights
5:00 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Deaf Student Claims Medical School In Yakima Denied Him Access

Zachary Featherstone poses with his wife and daughter.
Courtesy of Zachary Featherstone.

A man who was admitted to the Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences in Yakima, only to be told it couldn't make special accommodations for his disability, is suing the school claiming discrimination. 

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Transportation
5:00 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Seattle Mulls Reviving Downtown Streetcar In Hopes Of Easing Gridlock

A Seattle cable car is seen at Third and Yesler in 1940.
Courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives

The Seattle City Council is scheduled to vote today on whether to bring back the downtown streetcar.  

The proposed line would traverse First Avenue and link to the existing South Lake Union line and the First Hill line, which is slated to open later this year. 

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Legal Pot
5:00 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Little-Known Medical Marijuana Loophole Allows Teens To Get Lots of Pot

Courtesy of George Wing.

When voters approved Initiative 502, one part of the law that appealed to parents was that recreational marijuana would only be available to people 21 and older.

What many parents don’t realize is that it’s possible for a healthy teenager, with the help of an unethical medical provider, to obtain authorization for medical marijuana, which then gives them access to hundreds of dispensaries in the Seattle area. 

Meanwhile, Seattle Public Schools officials say marijuana use by students is on the rise, and students say it is easier to get than alcohol. Where is the supply coming from? Parents and school officials suspect medical marijuana dispensaries. 

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Jazz Northwest
2:05 pm
Sun June 29, 2014

Jazz Northwest: June 29, 2014

Sumi Tonooka

  There are jazz festivals at each end of the Salish Sea this week, from The American Classic Jazz Festival in Lacey to the Vancouver International Jazz Festival. 

There's also jazz in the Seattle area ranging from the ambitious Alchemy Project premiering original music by Sumi Tonooka, Erica Lindsay, Salim Washington, David Arend and Samantha Boshnack with Max Wood and Willem De Koch, playing at The Royal Room Sunday. 

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Chuck Quirmbach is a Milwaukee-based reporter who covers developments and issues in Southeastern Wisconsin that are of statewide interest. He has numerous years of experience covering state government, elections, the environment, energy, racial diversity issues, clergy abuse claims and major baseball stadium doings. He enjoys covering all topics.

Chuck is a frequent contributor to National Public Radio and several other regional or national radio outlets. He has won several individual awards, and several as part of a collaboration with other reporters.

(414) 227-2040 

 

 

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