Other News

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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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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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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Pineapple Express
8:21 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Monday morning headlines

Flooding near Granite Falls, Snohomish County, on Sunday, Dec. 12, 2010. Most rivers are receding today, but officials are keeping an eye on the Snohomish River, which will crest at near record levels Monday.
Twitpic/PeterM_KOMO

Floods and mudslides follow heavy rains, commuters can expect delays, and Seattle counts the landslides.

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Pineapple Express
8:01 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Record rains flood western Washington rivers

Flooding along the Stillaguamish River near Arlington, in Snohomish County.
KOMO TV via YouTube

Record rainfall in the Pacific Northwest has triggered mudslides and caused record flooding along some Western Washington rivers.  As many rivers recede this morning, some are still cresting, including the Snohomish River, where water levels are expected to remain above flood stage through Tuesday.

The Herald of Everett reports the Snohomish is being fed by the flooding Snoqualmie and Tolt rivers:

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Holiday Season
7:11 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Gift cards on wish list for Adopt-a-Family programs

Adopt-a-Family programs say kids benefit when parents can pick gifts that meet their needs
Solid Ground

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, local non-profits want to make sure needy families are on your list.  Several charities are collecting toys and clothes for people who can’t afford presents, but a few Adopt-a-Family programs ask donors to give something more than stuff. 

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Seattle World's Fair Anniversary
5:15 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Fun Forest future undecided

The Fun Forest at the Seattle Center.
Flickr/Life As Art

The decision about what will replace the Fun Forest at Seattle Center is still up in the air. This fall, a review panel recommended converting it into an exhibition space celebrating local glass artist Dale Chihuly.

That proposal promises millions in much-needed revenue. But the backers of several other ideas haven’t given up hope.

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State Budget Crisis
9:13 pm
Sat December 11, 2010

Lawmakers convene to address budget gap

It was short and bittersweet. Washington lawmakers convened Saturday in a rare, lame duck special session. Their job: take a bite out of the billion dollar hole in the current two-year budget. Lawmakers passed three pieces of legislation. 

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Weather
1:31 pm
Fri December 10, 2010

More sanders for the next snowstorm

WSDOT snowplows on I-5 during the November snowstorm
WSDOT

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is preparing for the next snowstorm in the Puget Sound Region with the addition of eight new "mini-sander" pickup trucks.  The trucks are being turned into sanders with the addition of hoppers and equipment mounted on the tailgates.

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Seattle Mariners
11:45 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Dave Niehaus 'life celebration' Saturday at Safeco Field

Famed Mariner broadcaster Dave Niehaus waves to fans at Safeco Field, May 7, 2000, upon the announcement of his induction to Baseball's Hall of Fame. A public memorial for Niehaus, who died last month, will take place on Saturday, Dec. 11th.
AP

The Seattle Mariners will hold a “Public Celebration of Life” for late broadcaster Dave Niehaus tomorrow.  Scheduled start is just after 1 p.m. Saturday at Safeco Field. 

Family, players and close associates will pay tribute to Niehaus, the only play-by-play announcer the team has ever had.  He died of a heart attack last month at the age of 75. 

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