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Elections 2011
10:00 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Levy would continue funding programs for veterans

King County Councilmember Bob Ferguson and others made a pitch for the Veterans and Human Services Levy on Wednesday.
Monica Spain KPLU

Ballots go out in the mail this week for the King County Primary Election. Among the measures is Proposition One which asks voters to renew the Veterans and Human Services Levy. 

Sheila Sebron is an U.S. Air Force veteran who does peer-to-peer outreach, helping others cope with life after military service.  She joined King county council members and other veterans who want to get the word out about saving programs they say are critical as more soldiers return home.

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Charity Fundraiser
9:50 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Update: More than $550,000 raised in honor of girl who died

Rachel Beckwith hoped to raise money to help bring clean water to poor people.
Courtesy of charity : water

In honor of her 9th birthday, Rachel Beckwith asked friends and family to donate money to bring clean water to an African village. She was close to her goal when she died over the weekend.

Nearly 16,000 people have made donations to a clean water project in honor of a nine-year-old Washington state girl. By Wednesday afternoon, there were donations totaling more than $550,000 to "charity: water" in Rachel's honor.

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Kurt Cobain
9:20 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Cobain's name doesn't get the bridge, but small landing

It'll be up to Cobain's fans to name the bridge in Aberdeen after the Nirvana front man because the city council said no.
Flickr

ABERDEEN, Wash. — The City Council in Aberdeen, Wash., voted 10-1 against a resolution to rename a bridge after the late Nirvana front man Kurt Cobain. The council did vote to name a small body of land on the Wishkah River the Cobain Landing.

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Traffic Woes
9:08 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Was your morning commute the pits? Crash blocks southbound I-5

TUMWATER, Wash. — The Washington State Patrol says a semi-truck driver fell asleep and crashed into a state Transportation Department truck on Interstate 5 about 5:30 a.m. Thursday near Tumwater.

No one was in the state truck and the semi driver suffered only a scratch on an arm. Southbound lanes of the freeway are blocked and rush hour traffic is diverted on side roads.

The Department of Ecology was called to help clean up about 50 gallons of fuel that spilled from the semi-truck.

Hanford Nuclear Reservation
8:55 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Layoff notices for up to 1,200 Hanford workers

RICHLAND, Wash. — Hanford nuclear reservation cleanup contractors are beginning Thursday to notify up to 1,200 workers they will be laid off at the end of September.

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Record Bin Roulette
4:00 am
Thu July 28, 2011

Pop music and politics, more cooptation than cooperation

Sarah Barracuda!
Chuckumentary Flickr

Political figures have frequently used pop music for an image boost. Bill Clinton played Fleetwood Mac’s “Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow,” and President Obama used the Allen Toussaint song “Yes We Can Can” to great effect.

But the musicians aren’t always so keen on the idea ...

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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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Law
4:44 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

Tacoma asks teens to spread curfew rules through videos

Tacoma is cracking down on minors who stay out past midnight, and city leaders are counting on teens to get the word out.

They just kicked off a contest that asks kids to make mini-movies about the city's curfew law. While they want minors to know the curfew is no joke, they say they’d love to see funny videos about it.

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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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Misinformation
4:01 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

Video of Tacoma housing project goes viral, gets it wrong

The Salishan development in Tacoma has been maligned in a YouTube video that has gone viral.
George Wesley and Bonita Dannells Flickr

An attack video claiming to expose a housing development in Tacoma "built for illegal immigrants!" has been played more than 300,000 times on YouTube. There’s only one problem, the Tacoma News Tribune reports, it’s completely wrong about almost everything.

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Law
2:49 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

Wash. prisons fined for safety violations after officer murder

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Lapses in training and “serious” safety violations may have contributed to the murder of a Washington correctional officer earlier this year. Those are the findings of a six month investigation by Washington’s workplace safety watchdog.

The agency issued citations and fines Wednesday against the Department of Corrections.

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Fraser River salmon
12:26 pm
Wed July 27, 2011

Controversy growing in Canada over ‘muzzling’ of salmon expert

Here is a stretch of the Fraser River in Vancouver, British Columbia. Scientists working with sockeye salmon struggling to cope with warming temperatures in the Fraser River have identified broad genetic traits that can predict which fish will live or die
Associated Press

Government officials in Ottawa are getting heat for apparently muzzling a scientist whose study discovered that a viral infection – which has been referred to as "salmon leukemia" – may be the cause of salmon stocks crashing off Canada’s west coast.

The Vancouver Sun reported that the Privy Council Office, which supports the Prime Minister’s Office, stopped the study’s lead scientist “from talking about one of the most significant discoveries to come out of a federal fisheries lab in years.”

The Canadian government told the Postmedia News, which wrote the story, that scientist Kristi Miller has not been permitted to talk about her work because she is expected to testify later this summer before a commission looking into the decline of the Frazer River sockeye salmon.

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Puget Sound
11:18 am
Wed July 27, 2011

Dead gray whale calf on Bremerton beach was very emaciated

BREMERTON, Wash. – A gray whale that washed up on a Bremerton beach was alive when the stranding was reported this morning but it was dead when a National Marine Fisheries employee arrived on the site on Dyes Inlet.

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Humanosphere
10:24 am
Wed July 27, 2011

Malawi protests: An African spring?

A protester burns vegetation in a street in Lilongwe, Malawi, last week. Protesters went on the rampage after a court injunction stopped them protesting the economic and democratic crisis in the country.
Associated Press

Just as when Tunisians first rose up against their government, few outside are paying much attention.

The same basic forces — unemployment, high food prices, human rights abuses and mistrust of government — which sparked the revolt in Tunisia and then led to today’s widespread popular revolution across the Arab world, is now at play in this small, southeastern African nation.

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Food for thought
5:00 am
Wed July 27, 2011

Strategies for buttering up the kernel

Corn skewers lie down on the job.
Wikipedia commons

Two  corn cobs walk into a bar.  They notice a third, shady-looking cob trailing them. First cob turns to his friend and whispers ...

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