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Budget shortfall
12:50 pm
Wed October 26, 2011

Projections gloomy for Tacoma city budget

Tacoma is facing a $26 million dollar budget shortfall. That was the grim news Interim City Manager Ray Arellano delivered to the Tacoma City Council during a 2011-2012 budget update. 

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Alaskan Way Viaduct
10:30 am
Wed October 26, 2011

WashDOT says Seattle viaduct work on schedule, releases photos

Work to demolish the viaduct's southern mile near S. Royal Brougham Way is well under way.
WSDOT

The Washington Transportation Department says the work that has shut down the Alaskan Way Viaduct in Seattle is on schedule.

WSDOT has published a new round of photos on it's Flickr site.

Spokesman Travis Phelps says the viaduct is scheduled to reopen early Monday. He said Wednesday it's unlikely the work would wrap up ahead of schedule. Some had hoped it would reopen in time for Sunday's Seahawks game in CenturyLink Field.

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Food for Thought
4:00 am
Wed October 26, 2011

Great squash recipes exposed

What's that plumber doing in my garden?
Nancy Leson Seattle Times

According to Roger Williams, the founder of Rhode Island, the Narragansett Tribe  called it askutasquash, meaning  "a green thing eaten raw."  Of course squash comes in plenty more colors than green and usually we cook it. 

Here's two ways.

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Environment
5:13 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

U.S. House bill would sell off public lands in the Northwest

A view of Huckleberry Mountain from Rachel Lake Trail in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.
Walter Siegmund Wikimedia Commons

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A bill in the U.S. House of Representatives would require the Obama Administration to sell off public lands, including parcels in the Northwest.

The issue got a hearing Tuesday in Washington, D.C., just as some northwest lawmakers are pushing for wilderness protections on other lands.

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Protesting Wall Street
4:20 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Cold chills Occupy Spokane; Seattle votes to head to college

Oakland police officers sift through possessions left behind by Occupy Oakland protestors Tuesday in Oakland, Calif. Occupy Oakland protestors were evicted from Frank H. Ogawa plaza early this morning by police in riot gear.
Associated Press

Spokane's version of the Occupy Wall Street protest has dwindled to only a handful of demonstrators, just a few weeks after a march through downtown drew some 300 people.

Meanwhile, in Seattle, Occupy protesters at Westlake Park voted yesterday to move from the park to Seattle Central Community College.

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Seattle Public Schools
3:34 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Theft charges brought against former Seattle schools manager

Interim Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Susan Enfield answers questions Tuesday following the announcement that charges of theft have been filed against former school district manager Silas Potter.
Paula Wissel KPLU

King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg has brought felony theft charges against former Seattle Public Schools manager Silas Potter Jr. and two associates, David A. Johnson and Lorrie Sorensen.

Potter was at the center of a financial scandal that led to the firing last March of former Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johsnon and Seattle Public Schools Chief Financial Officer Don Kennedy.

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Umatilla Chemical Depot
3:08 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

The Northwest is now chemical weapons free

Workers at the Umatilla Chemical Depot in northeast Oregon have incinerated the very last of the chemical mustard agent stored there.

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Election 2011
1:40 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Like Seattle, Tacoma marijuana initiative would limit pot arrests

Sherry Bockwinkel, volunteer campaign chair for the marijuana initiative, owns a printing and lamp repair shop in Tacoma's hilltop neighborhood.
Paula Wissel KPLU

Tacoma ballot Initiative 1 directs police to give the lowest priority to enforcing minor marijuana laws.  If the Initiative passes, arrests would be unlikely in Tacoma for  possession of 40 grams or less of marijuana.

Sherry Bockwinkel, who has run a lot of statewide initiative campaigns, is volunteering her time to run the  Tacoma marijuana initiative campaign.  She believes Tacoma police have better things to do than bust people for pot.

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Global Health
1:32 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

World population soon to hit the 7 billion mark ... will we survive?

Pretty soon, joining the crowd may not be an option – it'll be crowds everywhere.
Stefano Corso Flickr

Sometime around Halloween, we’re told, the world’s 7th billion living person will be born.

Whether you should celebrate this milestone, recoil in horror or shrug depends upon your perspective regarding global population growth.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Dam removal
1:22 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Demolition crew rigs explosives on aging Washington dam

Condit Dam
D. Kvamme PacifiCorp

Update: Watch the explosion and dam breach.

WHITE SALMON, Wash. – Demolition experts are rigging 700 pounds of dynamite today at Condit Dam in southwest Washington. Crews are scheduled to breach the aging hydropower dam on the White Salmon River around noon Wednesday.

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Election 2011
1:20 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Voters asked to renew Seattle's Families & Ed Levy

As people across Washington face the deadline to pay their property taxes – Seattle is asking homeowners to consider shelling out even more next year.

The Families and Education levy is up for renewal on the November ballot … at double the cost to taxpayers. 

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Early Humans
11:01 am
Tue October 25, 2011

Jawbone found near Kennewick Man site, raising specter of controversy

Dr. Doug Owlsley, left, of the National Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian Institution, arranges the pieces from the model of the Kennewick Man for a presentation for the media at University Towers in Seattle in 2005.
Associated Press

Federal archeologists are investigating a very old jawbone that turned up Monday along the Columbia River in Kennewick, Wash. The human remains were found a short distance from where Kennewick Man was discovered in 1996 and sparked a decade-long legal conflict.

The battles over Kennewick Man have scientists being extra cautious with the new discovery.

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The Digital Future
4:30 am
Tue October 25, 2011

A Merry Christmas for technology?

Apple's iPhone 4s will be one of the big hits of the holiday season.
Michael Nienaltowski flickr.com

Strategic News Service publisher Mark Anderson is predicting the technology sector will end the year on a relatively high note. But, as he tells KPLU's Dave Meyer on The Digital Future, he's worried about the first quarter of 2012.

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Alaskan Way Viaduct Closure
5:15 pm
Mon October 24, 2011

West Seattle Water Taxi becomes popular alternative to 'Viadoom'

Commuters line up in West Seattle to catch the Water Taxi. Many more filed onto the boat today instead of attempting to make it through the 'viadoom' scenario feared on many roadways due to the closure of the Alaskan Way Viaduct.
Joey Cohn KPLU

So far – not so bad. That seems to be the upshot of the first weekday commute without the Alaskan Way Viaduct through Seattle. Traffic was slow, but not totally gridlocked Monday morning.

The state Department of Transportation says many people heeded their warnings and changed their commute patterns. That was certainly the case on board the West Seattle water taxi, which picked up nearly twice as many riders.

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Washington trade
5:10 pm
Mon October 24, 2011

Wash. governor defers to State Dept. on human rights in China

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington Governor Chris Gregoire has returned from her second trade mission to China. The state’s Tibetan community wanted her to press Communist officials on the issue of human rights.

But the Democratic governor believes that’s the role of the State Department.

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