City of Seattle

Transportation
5:40 pm
Wed October 26, 2011

Local manufacturer will help build Seattle's second streetcar line

New streetcars for a line through Seattle's First Hill neighborhood will be built by the same company that manufactured cars for the South Lake Union line (shown), with help from a Seattle-based partner.
Charla Bear KPLU

Seattle has selected a contractor to build its new fleet of streetcars. The city is gearing up to start construction of a route through First Hill. 

Officials say it could be the beginning of many more streetcar possibilities.

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Fair Housing
10:16 am
Fri October 21, 2011

Undercover sting finds illegal housing discrimination in Seattle

A snapshot of everyday business practices displays a pattern of discrimination against black and disabled renters in Seattle. That’s the conclusion of an undercover investigation by the city’s Office for Civil Rights. 

The city contracted with the non-profit Fair Housing Center of Washington to test 48 properties that were randomly selected. It found more than half of all properties tested showed evidence of illegal housing discrimination.

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Business
1:44 pm
Thu September 15, 2011

Phone book opt-out deadline is next week

Emiliano Pennisi flickr.com

If you live in Seattle and want to avoid receiving piles of phone books that you don't need, the deadline is September 23. The city has an opt-out website at www.seattle.gov/stopphonebooks

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Transportation Funding
3:56 pm
Tue August 16, 2011

Seattle asking voters to approve a $60 car tab fee

Seattle voters will face a proposed car tab fee on the November ballot. The city council has unanimously agreed to ask for an additional $60 annually for the next 10 years to help pay for road and transit projects. 

The news comes just a day after the King County Council added a temporary $20 car tab fee to maintain bus service.

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Battle in D.C.
2:02 pm
Thu July 28, 2011

Impact of debt ceiling debate? UW, cities could be downgraded

The battle in D.C. over the debt ceiling could have real lasting impact on the credit ratings for UW and cities in Washington.
Flickr

University of Washington, the City of Seattle and King County all face possible credit rating downgrades because of the federal government stalemate over raising the national debt ceiling.

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Humanosphere
5:38 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

New Seattle org wants to unite all the do-gooders in Seattle

Seattle has a plethora of organizations helping people around the world. (Pictured is Seattle International Foundation's Mauricio Vivero in Guatemala, checking on a Seattle-funded microfinance project). A new organization wants to connect them all.
SIF

“We live in this amazing community where so many people are trying to make a difference …”

Seattle has become a hub, or more accurately a hodgepodge, of international do-gooders. And, well, nobody seems to really have a handle on everything going on.

That’s where another internationally oriented foundation in Seattle comes in. Appropriately enough, it’s called the Seattle International Foundation.

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Medical Marijuana
4:19 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

Seattle mayor signs city's medical marijuana law

Mayor McGinn on Wednesday signed an ordinance creating a regulatory framework for medical cannabis operations within the City of Seattle.
Jen Nance Office of Seattle Mayor

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn has signed an ordinance that will regulate medical marijuana shops like any other business.

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Sustainability
6:20 pm
Wed July 20, 2011

Seattleites recycling more than ever before

A model Seattle family of recyclers: Bing Tso, Janet Gwilym and their kids put more than 70% of their waste each week into recycling and yard waste bins. Their trash fits into tiny receptacle at their feet.
Photo by Bellamy Pailthorp KPLU

Seattle residents and businesses have hit an all-time high for recycling rates. And from the front yard of a model recycling family in Seattle, Mayor Mike McGinn gave the city a pat on the back:

“53 percent – an all-time high– 53 percent of the waste produced in the city of Seattle is taken out of the waste-stream and recycled,” McGinn said.

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drug laws
5:31 pm
Mon July 18, 2011

Seattle council votes to regulate medical marijuana

"Good Lord, how did we get here ..."

Seattle has become the first city in Washington to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries. A number of other cities have banned the businesses outright.  The Seattle City Council decided to take the opposite approach after efforts to regulate medical pot at the state level failed.

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Environment
2:14 pm
Wed July 13, 2011

Seattle takes another step toward green with new electric cars

The Seattle motor pool's new Nissan Leafs
Mayor McGinn's photostream flickr.com

The city of Seattle is greening up its fleet of vehicles with the addition of five Nissan Leafs. The city plans to have a total of 35 Leafs by the end of 2012.

Seattle is one of 18 cities taking part in The EV Project, the nation's largest electric vehicle demonstration.

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Medical Marijuana
2:58 pm
Mon July 11, 2011

Seattle City Council pondering regulation of medical marijuana

The city of Seattle is looking into regulating medical marijuana.
Flickr

With roughly 25,000 Seattleites “legally” smoking marijuana for medical reasons, the city council has decided to step in where Gov. Chris Gregoire dared not tread. The city will begin holding hearings on an ordinance for regulating the growing and sale of medical marijuana.

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Traffic Woes
2:23 pm
Tue July 5, 2011

Seattle traffic will not be better this weekend

Between closure of State Route 520 and I-5 ramps to and from Mercer Street, expect anther bad weekend for traffic.
Flickr

You can expect region-wide congestion this weekend, the state Department of Transportation says, because State Route 520 will be closed between Montlake Boulevard in Seattle and Interstate 405 in Bellevue.

And, the city of Seattle will close the Interstate 5 ramps to and from Mercer Street.

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Rate Hikes
2:40 pm
Fri July 1, 2011

Seattle water rates could increase 25 percent by 2014

Fountain at Seattle's Volunteer Park. 7/16/2006
Justin Baeder flickr.com

Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is proposing a 25 percent hike in drinking water rates spread over the next three years. SPU says the typical monthly household bill is currently $31.70. The proposal would increase that monthly bill by $2.41 in 2012, $2.68 in 2013 and $2.91 in 2014.

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Other News
1:42 pm
Mon June 20, 2011

Seattle council wants you on the ‘happiness team’

Let's all get happy!
sea turtle Flickr

The Seattle City Council has unanimously endorsed The Happiness Initiative, reports Sustainable Seattle, an organization that develops regional indicators of well-being and sustainability.

“Measuring the subjective happiness or well-being levels of Seattle residents is an important tool that can help our council make effective policy decisions and can engage our community in conversations about what we really want from life and from our economy,” City Council President Richard Conlin said in a press release.

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Budget Cuts
4:25 pm
Thu June 16, 2011

Options for Seattle community centers include closures

Dancers face off in a competition at Southwest Community Center. Seattle officials say the centers aren't sustainable and some could close.
Seattle Parks and Recreation

Some neighborhoods could lose their central gathering spots for kids and seniors. The city is considering closing several community centers or reducing hours to cut costs. 

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