State Budget
4:08 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Lawmaker floats idea of victims’ compensation fund

People enjoy a sunny day outside the Washington state Capitol
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

In the current budget year, the state of Washington is on track to pay 60-million dollars to settle damage and personal injury lawsuits filed against the state. That has some lawmakers alarmed, especially in light of the state’s multi-billion dollar budget crisis. Now, one state representative has an idea for a 9-11 style victims’ compensation fund.

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Alaskan Way Viaduct
1:34 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Seattle street closes tonight as Viaduct replacement work begins

WSDOT has created an interactive overhead map of the S. Holgate to S. King street reconstruction portion of the Alaskan Way Viaduct road project. The web address is: http://wsdot.wa.gov/projects/viaduct/simulations
WSDOT

The first major street closure in the work to replace Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct happens Monday night.

The state Department of Transportation says it's closing First Avenue South next to Qwest Field from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. Tuesday to allow crews to set up space for the huge construction job.

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Mental Health
9:24 am
Mon January 3, 2011

Mental health advocates criticize reporting on funding cuts

Washington State Coalition for Mental Health Reporting

Mental health advocates say news stories of social service budge cuts are unfairly stereotyping people who suffer from mental illness.



They say a case in point is a recent cover of The Stranger, which included the headline "How a decimated state budget equals more unmedicated loons with hatchets."

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Pre-K Education
7:32 am
Mon January 3, 2011

University of Washington center reimagines Head Start Program

Kids read at a preschool program in Seattle
Seattle Office for Education

A new project just launched at the University of Washington could give Head Start teachers a boost.  The effort aims to redesign how instructors for the federal early learning program are trained.

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Artscape
6:56 am
Mon January 3, 2011

Boogie Woogie with a heart

Eric “Two Scoops” Moore is a big, gregarious man who's released seven critically-acclaimed CDs. The Washington Blues Society has honored him with numerous awards. Perhaps more than those accomplishments, the blues musician is better known for his musical spontaneity and his big heart. 

Despite life's challenges and some true hardships, he retains a keen sense of optimism. Flesh eating disease? No problem. His wife Amy's multiple sclerosis?  That's easy. You find out why when you listen to his philosophy. The wild look in his kind eyes starts to tell the story. His uncanny connection with a piano punctuates it.

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News Roundup
6:20 am
Mon January 3, 2011

Monday morning's headlines: Funding higher ed, Seahawks in playoffs, and M.I. High in London

Seattle Seahawks' Leon Washington in action against the St. Louis Rams in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011, in Seattle.
AP (John Froschauer)

Washington looks for better ways to fund higher education, the Seahawks claim the NFC West title and a playoff berth, and Mercer Island High's band prances through London's New Year's parade.

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Water Purification
5:55 pm
Sun January 2, 2011

Some help for Yakima Valley residents with bad wells

Sandy Halstead, of the Environmental Protection Agency, and a summer intern, listen to the concerns of a homeowner in the Yakima Valley. Many private wells in the Eastern Washington agricultural area are polluted with nitrates.
Anna King N3

Residents with contaminated wells in the Yakima Valley are getting state-funded purification systems, at least some of them are. Many families there have been drinking water polluted with nitrates and bacteria.

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Best of 2010
9:36 pm
Sat January 1, 2011

John Kessler's top ten blues albums of 2010

This is one of KPLU's All Blues host John Kessler's top 10 blues albums of the year.
Courtesy Sony/BMB Masterworks

He's made his list, and checked it twice. KPLU All Blues host John Kessler has his 2010 top 10 blues albums list, and he's ready to share it with you.  What albums are on your list? Which from John's list would you not include?  Let's hear what you have to say!

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East King County
9:32 pm
Sat January 1, 2011

Five dead in Redmond fire

Updated Jan. 1 at 8:54 p.m.

Authorities in Redmond say five people - four of them children - have been killed in an apartment fire early Saturday.

Police spokesman Officer Matt Peringer says a 32-year-old man died and a woman was taken to a hospital. The children, four boys, were aged 11 and younger, according to The Seattle Times. 

Residents of 12 apartments were evacuated and taken to temporary housing.

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2010 in Review
10:49 am
Fri December 31, 2010

KPLU News favorite stories of 2010

An art installation at Seattle's old INS Building (now INScape) in the International District opened a new chapter for the historically-rich space.
INScape

As 2010 winds to a close, the KPLU News reporting team has been looking back at the stories they covered this year, and have chosen some favorites. 

The reports they selected aren't necessarily the 'biggest' news stories of the year, or necessarily on the reporter's beat. They are the ones that for each were memorable because of they exemplify the art, beauty and impact of the aural medium, the joy of radio storytelling.

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Sports with Art Thiel
1:30 am
Fri December 31, 2010

Top five Seattle sports stories of 2010

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll right, greets Seahawks' Earl Thomas after a play against the Carolina Panthers in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010 in Seattle.
Ted S. Warren AP

What would you say was the top Seattle sports story of 2010?   Sports commentator Art Thiel has come up with his top five, and he shared them with KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick.

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Welcoming 2011
12:15 am
Fri December 31, 2010

Will publicly-shared New Year's resolutions stick?

One of the dozens of resolutions posted publicly on the website newyearseattle.org
newyearseattle.org

It’s that time of year again. The time where we reflect on the past 12 months and ask: what would we change about ourselves in 2011? 

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Holiday Bowl
10:48 pm
Thu December 30, 2010

Huskies humble Nebraska, get first bowl win since '01

Washington's Nate Fellner, right, celebrates his interception against Nebraska with teammate Cort Dennison during the first half of the Holiday Bowl in San Diego, Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010.
AP

Coach Steve Sarkisian told ESPN it "a big win for the Husky Nation" after his Washington team beat daunting odds to defeat the 18th-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers in Thursday's Holiday Bowl in San Diego. The UW dominated on defense and offense for a 19-7 victory.

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Best of 2010
12:37 pm
Thu December 30, 2010

The top five Studio Sessions from the past year

This has been an amazing year for KPLU's Studio Sessions. We have had the honor of hosting live in-studio performances from jazz icons Doctor John and The Manhattan Transfer, to rising stars such as Esperanza Spalding and Nikki Yanofsky.

Though it was difficult to narrow these down to a top-five list, here is what I compiled based on attendee & listener response as well as video views and audio plays from across the Web.

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Other News
10:02 am
Thu December 30, 2010

Seattle plans higher parking rates for busiest times

Brian Teutsch Flickr

Seattle drivers who've been accustomed to paying the same curbside parking rates at all times of day could soon be faced with variable parking prices based on market factors, with rates higher at busier times. The Seattle Times reports city officials hope variable fees will mean quicker turnover of scarce parking spaces and reduce congestion caused by people who circle blocks looking for an opening. Market-based  parking rates are already in place in several U. S. cities including San Francisco, Los Angeles and Washington, D. C.

"It helps reduce the traffic congestion, of people finding a spot", said Mary Catherine Snyder, a parking strategist for the Seattle Department of Transportation.

The Seattle Department of Transportation will publish data from its study on parking trends in mid-January, then take several weeks to to reprogram meters to reflect new neighborhood-level rates. Parking meter rates in Seattle will increase this spring to as high as $4.  Included in the City Council's budget is a proposal to require paid parking to a later hour, from the current 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

By 2012, the city would be able to customize rates block by block and alter parking rates by time of day.

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