Business

Business of the Internet
12:15 pm
Tue November 15, 2011

Seattle looks to expand broadband Internet with help from private businesses

City of Seattle CTO Bill Schrier shows odd fiber optic cable lines running through underground pipes near Pioneer Square (May 2011.)
Charla Bear Photo KPLU News

Do you have a high-speed Internet connection?

If you do, you’re pretty lucky ... because many people in the Puget Sound region don’t ... even in relatively big cities, such as Seattle.

As part of a national push, the city has teamed up with the University of Washington to try and bring more private investment to broadband infrastructure.

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Business
3:56 pm
Mon November 14, 2011

Local liquor stores will likely still sell booze

What's your poison?
Columbine Quillen Flickr

Maybe you’re a regular and know the cashiers by name, or maybe you only go in once a year - to pick up some rum to make that eggnog a little more grown-up. In any case, you might be surprised to learn your local state run liquor store could remain a liquor store.

Brian Smith of the Washington State Liquor Control Board, said the recently passed initiative folds the existing liquor licenses in to the new system.

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Idaho Jobs
10:02 am
Thu November 10, 2011

Script: Jobless in Idaho - College grad starts from scratch

Nearly 70,000 people in Idaho don’t have jobs. That’s according to estimates from the Idaho Department of Labor. That figure doesn’t take into account the thousands of people who are underemployed or who’ve given up the search.

Justy Thomas was 34 years old then, and like so many in her situation, was at a crossroads. When Thomas lost her job four years ago she decided to college.

Thomas: "I wanted to do a reset. I wanted to change my career"

She says going to college also seemed like a necessity.

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Business of the Environment
5:25 pm
Tue November 8, 2011

Alaska Air demonstrating aviation biofuels

It’s a big week for aviation biofuels.

A United flight took off Monday from Houston, for the first time burning jet fuel that was made from algae-based oil. And Alaska Air begins its demonstration flights from Seattle tomorrow (Wednesday, 2 p.m.)  – with fuel made from used cooking oil. 

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Technology
4:10 pm
Fri November 4, 2011

Northwest chip maker to tap demand for smartphone memory

Consumers are using their phones to do what their computers once did. And that's prompting a major technology company in the Northwest to shift its focus too.

The bread and butter of Micron Technology has been memory for PCs. But the CEO of the Boise chip maker told Bloomberg BusinessWeek the company will expand its base of products for mobile devices.

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Economic downturn
2:25 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Cost of living jump in Northwest challenging worker paychecks

Even workers with the same job and same wage are finding it harder and harder to get along in Seattle and other parts of Washington.
Chris Devers Flickr

It isn't just the poor and unemployed who are suffering in Seattle and Washington, but people who ten years ago were living comfortably on their wages are now living with a paycheck that doesn't seem to go far enough.

A new study from the University of Washington has found that the cost of living in Seattle and Washington State has risen significantly while worker wages have remained the same.

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Business
3:46 pm
Mon October 31, 2011

Even in a recession, Halloween means cash for retailers

Keep an eye out for trick-or-treaters as you head out on the roads this evening Despite the down economy, retailers expect Halloween spending will rise this year.

The National Retail Federation's annual Halloween spending survey found that the average person plans to spend about $72 on costumes, candy and decorations. That's a jump of more than $15 over the past two years.

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Economy
10:50 am
Thu October 27, 2011

Canadian electricity giant opens U.S. headquarters in Olympia

Governor Chris Gregoire at TransAlta's ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new US headquarters in Olympia

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 11:05 am

Canadian electricity giant TransAlta has already agreed to shut down its coal-fired power plant in southwest Washington by 2025. But the company isn’t packing up and leaving. In fact, Wednesday the Alberta-based company opened its first US headquarters in Olympia.

Paul Taylor will head TransAlta’s US operations. He calls Washington’s capital city a “sweet spot” location for the company.

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Recreation
11:25 am
Thu October 20, 2011

Washington ski areas may expand recreation opportunities

Crystal Mountain could benefit from the new federal rules.
clappstar Flickr

BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Congress has approved more summer activities at ski areas on federal lands.

The Bellingham Herald reports the Ski Area Recreational Opportunity Enhancement Act the cleared the Senate Tuesday will allow ski areas to be used for more than winter sports.

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Business
5:53 pm
Wed October 19, 2011

Occupy Seattle, get free pizza; protests cost city $105,000 so far

Big Mario's Pizza delivers hot pies to Seattle's Occupy Wall Street protesters.
David Meinert

As the Occupy Wall Street Movement snowballs, small business owners, who employ just over half of all private sector employees in the nation, say they’re a part of the 99%, too.

It’s 5 o’clock in Seattle’s Westlake Park – the beating heart of the local Occupy Wall Street movement—and Jennifer Fox and some fellow teenage occupiers are smoking hand rolled cigarettes. They’re waiting for the free pizza.

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Agriculture
4:10 pm
Mon October 17, 2011

Worker shortage may force apple growers to leave some fruit behind

Apples going in want of pickers in Washington state.
Andrea Parrish Flickr

Across the Northwest, apple growers are having a hard time bringing in their harvest because of a worker shortage. The result may mean certain lower-priced varieties of apples don’t get picked at all.

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Election 2011
5:41 pm
Wed October 12, 2011

Costco's support tops $11M on liquor initiative

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Costco has given more than $11 million to support an initiative campaign that would privatize Washington's liquor distribution and sales.

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Economy
9:26 am
Mon October 10, 2011

Forecasters predict ho-hum holiday hiring in Northwest

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 11:05 am

SALEM, Ore. - It's the time of year that retailers think about hiring extra help for the holidays. Labor experts in Oregon and Washington say job prospects for seasonal hires are ho-hum in the jolly ho-ho-ho season.

Washington state's Employment Department is predicting about 13,000 holiday jobs will materialize in the state through the end of the year. If true, that would fall short of last year's numbers.

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Steve Jobs
4:54 pm
Wed October 5, 2011

Tributes Pour Forth For Steve Jobs; Apple Co-Founder Was 56

A screengrab shows the Boing Boing website, restyled to resemble one of an early Mac operating system in honor of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

NPR

Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 7:07 pm

Tributes are pouring forth in honor of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who died Wednesday at age 56. He is being remembered as a visionary who co-founded Apple, left the company, and then returned to build it into a global powerhouse.

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Hanford Nuclear Reservation
4:12 pm
Mon October 3, 2011

Layoffs add up to a sober week for Hanford workers

More than 1,000 workers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation are getting layoff notices. This latest round of downsizing started this week due to reduced federal funding in 2012.

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