News Roundup

News Roundup
9:46 am
Fri March 18, 2011

Friday morning's headlines

David Scheider, who once led Washington Mutual's home loan division, and Kerry Killinger (rear right), former CEO of the failed bank, at a Congressional investigation into WaMu's failure, April 13, 2010, in Washington D.C. They are being sued by the FDIC.

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Lawsuits Blame Top WaMu Execs
  • Deeper Cuts for State Ahead
  • New Findings in Port Orchard Wal-Mart Shooting


Killinger on FDIC Allegations: "Fiction"

Negligence led to the nation's largest-ever bank failure, claims the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), which filed suit against former Washington Mutual leaders Kerry Killinger, David Schneider and Stephen Rotella. The Seattle Times' Sanjay Bhatt reports the FDIC wants:

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News Roundup
7:05 am
Thu March 17, 2011

Thursday morning's headlines

The ink is barely dry on these signs at a WSDOT facility. Now they may soon apply to carpool lanes on I-405 as well.
WSDOT Flickr

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Carpool Tolls Likely on I-405
  • Not Guilty Plea in Prison Guard Murder Charge
  • Grand Jury Request by Woodcarver's Family


I-405 Carpool Tolls Coming?

As drivers get ready to pay new tolls this spring to cross the Highway 520 floating bridge – more tolls could be on the way.  State lawmakers have proposed charging cars with only one or two people in them to use carpool lanes on I-405 from Lynnwood to Bellevue. 

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News Roundup
7:07 am
Wed March 16, 2011

Wednesday morning's headlines

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Going Back to College Could Get More Expensive
  • Higher Ed Bills Drawing Fresh Faces to Olympia
  • Arson Attempt at Olympia Police Station
  • Sounders Drop MLS Opener


Bill Would Hike Fees For College Returnees

If you plan to go back to college you could end up paying a lot more in tuition. A budget-saving proposal in Olympia would apply to people who already have a degree and then go for extra training at a community college, reports The Seattle Times' Queenie Wong:

SB5868 would require students with a bachelor's degree who attend a community or technical college to bear the entire cost of instruction - the price of regular tuition plus the share that the state pays.

That means it could affect current university students who take extra time and credits to get their degree.  State Senator Rodney Tom of Bellevue tells Wong that during a tight economy, government has to prioritize. It’s important to help students attend college, he says, but not for extra training.

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News Roundup
7:21 am
Tue March 15, 2011

Tuesday morning's headlines

Former Micosoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates, right, and former Corporate Vice President J Allard, left, posed for photos in 2007 with Zune media players. Microsoft has now announced that it is giving up its Zune.
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Boeing Readies for 747-8 First Flight
  • Dozens of Mudslides Block Rail Lines
  • Microsoft's Zune Sails Away


First Flight Plans for 747-8

Boeing's newest passenger jet could make its maiden voyage as early as Sunday.  The Herald of Everett Michelle Dunlop reports the  only obstacles are some tests on taxiing the plane and a thumbs-up from the Federal Aviation Administration:

"The team continues to do great work to get the 747-8 Intercontinental into the air," said Elizabeth Lund, vice president and general manager, 747 program. "It'll be a great day for the team when the airplane flies."

In the run-up to first flight, Boeing conducted flight simulation tests last weekend. The freighter version of the 747-8 is already in the air for tests, Dunlop writes. Initial deliveries of the freighter jets are scheduled by year's end.

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News Roundup
7:49 am
Mon March 14, 2011

Monday morning's headlines

It will be a rainy and windy Monday around Western Washington, with high temperatures in the low 50's.  Rain is in the forecast all this week. 

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Mudslides Affect Commute
  • Northwest Relief Workers to Japan
  • Obama's Education Secretary Here, Virtually


Rails and Roads Covered in Mud

Sounder rail lines, Amtrak routes and at least one major highway are blocked by mudslides this morning. Sunday's heavy rains caused at least three separate slides over Burlington Northern Santa Fe tracks: two north of Seattle, and one in southwest Washington near Vancouver. 

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News Roundup
7:58 am
Thu March 10, 2011

Thursday morning's headlines

Phyllis Macay and Bob Riggle of Seattle were killed after the yacht on which they were passengers was hijacked off the coast of Oman. Thirteen men accused of the hijacking have been indicted in a Virginia court. This photo is from 2005.
Courtesy Joe Grande

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Pirates in Fatal Yacht Hijacking Indicted
  • Arrest in Spokane MLK Day Bomb Plot
    • State Details Patient Escape from Western State
    • UW-WSU Meet Tonight in Pac-10 Championships


    Indictments in High Seas Hijacking, Murders

    Fourteen men are charged today with the hijacking of a yacht on which four Americans - including a Seattle couple - were shot to death.

    The US Justice Department is holding the 13 Somalis and a man from Yemen in Norfolk, Virginia. They are expected to make a court appearance today, according to The Associated Press.

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    News Roundup
    6:52 am
    Tue March 8, 2011

    Tuesday morning's headlines

    Seattle Deputy Police Chief Clark Kimerer on Feb. 16, announcing SPD findings that the fatal shooting of John T. Williams last summer was not justified. A new SPD report finds police use of force declined sharply between 2006 and 2009.
    Liam Moriarty KPLU News

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Report: Seattle Police Don't Abuse Use of Force
    • Supreme Court Sides With Local Peace Activist
    • Gonzaga Makes NCAA Field


    Seattle Police: Our Use of Force "Rare"

    Seattle Police say the public's impression that officers are using more physical force is wrong.  In fact, a new department report makes the case that use of force is rare. The's Casey McNerthny details  a number of recent incidents where officers have been under scrutiny for charges of excessive force.  Still, the report:

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    News Roundup
    8:15 am
    Mon March 7, 2011

    Monday morning's headlines

    Jennifer Mendelson begins to fill her car's gas tank at a station near downtown Seattle.
    Elaine Thompson AP Photo

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Accused Monroe Killer Was Known Threat
    • Northwest Gas Prices Spike
    • Union Claims Seattle School Board Knew About Troubles
    • Pac 10 Tourney Pits UW vs. WSU

    Scherf Was Long Considered Risk to Prison Staff

    Byron Scherf, who confessed to murdering Monroe prison guard Jaime Biendl, was known to corrections officials as a possible threat to staff for years, according to The Herald of Everett:

    "Staff are concerned that his next victim could be a staff person," one corrections worker wrote June 1, 2001, in the running log state prison officials have kept on Scherf's behavior since the mid-1990s. 

    Other observations made about the same time point out that Scherf:

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    News Roundup
    7:19 am
    Fri March 4, 2011

    Friday morning's headlines

    Seattle's July 4th fireworks extravaganza, known as the Family 4th, produced by the nonprofit One Reel, will take place again this year, after enough funding was secured. Still, the agency is short of its budget.
    Joshua Trujillo AP Photo/

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Pierce County Deputy Dies
    • Boeing Rival Expected to Concede Tanker Fight
    • Seattle's Big Fireworks Show Will Return


    Shock at Pierce County Sheriff's Office

    Pierce County's law enforcement officers are "in shock" today after the sudden death of sheriff's deputy. Shandon Wright died at home yesterday evening, a day after undergoing surgery for a shoulder injury that happened on the job last year.

    Fifty off-duty officers responded to his South Hill home upon hearing the news, according to the News Tribune's Stacia Glenn. The exact cause of Wright's death is being investigated.

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    News Roundup
    7:59 am
    Thu March 3, 2011

    Thursday morning's headlines

    Sometimes hard to see, wood smoke is found to be more dominant pollutant in Tacoma than anyone had realized, according to a new study. The levels exceed federal standards.
    Jon Froschauer AP

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Tacoma's Wood Smoke Problem
    • New Superintendent for Seattle
    • More Lye Leaks From Wrecked Railcar

    Unusual Readings of Tacoma Pollutants

    Wood smoke is a presenting a bigger pollution problem in Tacoma than experts have thought, according to a newly released study by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency. The News Tribune's Rob Carson writes diesel and gas emissions remain the  dominant pollutants:

    But in Tacoma, the risks from wood smoke were as much as seven times higher than is typical in other urban areas. Potential health effects include cancer, lung damage, heart disease and nerve damage.

    The agency's Ryan Dicks tells the Trib more people may be heating with wood stoves because it's cheaper. The high wood smoke readings pushed Tacoma past federal clean air standards, the only area in the state to get such a mark. 


    Seattle Wonders "Who is Susan Enfield?"

    Seattle headlines are dominated this morning by the school board firing of Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson and her top finance and operations manager, Don Kennedy, in the wake of a financial scandal. KPLU's Jennifer Wing was at last night's meeting, packed with angry parents and teachers who cheered the results.

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    News Roundup
    8:04 am
    Wed March 2, 2011

    Wednesday morning's headlines

    School Board President Steve Sundquist speaks about the board's plans to vote Wednesday on a motion to fire Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson. Next to him are board members Kay Smith-Blum and Peter Maier.
    Keith Seinfeld KPLU

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Seattle Schools Scandal: Contractor Defends Pay
    • Amber Alert Ends Safely in Bonney Lake
    • JBLM Soldier Killed in Afghanistan
    • NASCAR for Puget Sound?


    Seattle School Contractors Ready to Speak Out

    As the Seattle School Board prepares to vote on a motion to fire Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson this evening, one of the contractors under scrutiny in the alleged contracting fraud is speaking out. Seattle's Urban League and other small business contractors are expected to tell reporters, including KPLU's Paula Wissel, they earned their pay.

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    News Roundup
    6:59 am
    Tue March 1, 2011

    Tuesday morning's headlines

    Cell phone video of the explosion and fire at a Pierce Transit center in Lakewood Monday afternoon, provided to KING-TV. The blast was loud and fire was hot, but no one was injured.

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Lakewood Explosion Investigated
    • Seattle Superintendent's Future on the Line
    • Will EADS Challenge Boeing's Tanker Win?

    What Caused Lakewood Blast?

    A series of explosions at a Pierce Transit center on South Tacoma Way yesterday afternoon is being investigated this morning. Compressed natural gas at fueling pumps ignited somehow, and it spread to storage units on site.  No one was injured.

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    News Roundup
    6:26 am
    Mon February 28, 2011

    Monday morning's headlines

    In this 2001 photo, Paul Riek checks to see if his car starts after parts of the top half of a nearby building fell on it, during the Nisqually earthquake.
    Stevan Morgain AP Photo

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Tenth Anniversary of Nisqually Quake
    • Viaduct Issue Before Seattle City Council Today
    • Weekend Tacoma Train Derailment Cleared


    Nisqually Quake Memories Still Fresh

    But what lessons did we learn from the Feb. 28, 2001 quake that jangled our collective nerves? KPLU's Liam Moriarty gives an overview, including the breadth of upgrades to emergency systems, bridges and buildings. 

    Following the quake, the number of seismic monitoring sites have tripled around the Sound, according to John Dodge of The Olympian, meant to help us prepare for the type of quakes that could cause devastation:

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    News Roundup
    7:48 am
    Fri February 25, 2011

    Friday morning's headlines

    Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

    • Boeing and Region Cheer Contract Win
    • Seattle Schools "Rogue" Manager
    • Cold Weekend Ahead


    Upset Victory Spawns Local Celebrations

    Boeing was the "underdog" and came out fighting to win, according to U.S. Senator Patty Murray. At a celebratory Seattle news conference with Senator Maria Cantwell and other state congressional leaders, they praised the Pentagon's decision on the $35 billion Air Force tanker contract, as KPLU's Bellamy Pailthorp reported.

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    News Roundup
    8:58 am
    Thu February 24, 2011

    Thursday morning's headlines

    The backup at 9:20 a.m. today on I-5 in the Olympia area has worsened as snow and freezing fog plague drivers.

    This morning's headlines are a roundup of the winter snowstorm and cold temperatures affecting Western Washington communities today:

    Updated 8:58 a.m.

    Driving Conditions Tough, Dangerous

    Stay off the roads if at all possible. That advisory is from state transportation leaders, who are dealing with snow and ice clogged sections of freeways, overpasses, and ramps. While many main arterials are passable, the approaches are tough, especially in south King County, Snohomish, Skagit, Thurston and parts of Pierce County, according to KING-TV:

    Drivers stuck on Sahalee Way in Redmond were abandoning their cars. Drivers on southbound Interstate 5 near Sea-Tac were crawling along.

    As of 9 a.m., WSDOT cameras show that Thurston and Pierce county roads - including I-5 - are heavily impacted by heavy snow, freezing fog and ice. Accidents have caused backups.

    The Olympian's Nate Hulings reports driving conditions are expected to worsen today, as National Weather Service forecasts for Thurston County show accumulations could be significant  through this morning:

    Periods of heavy snowfall were expected to continue through this morning, with 2 to 6 inches of snow forecast, meteorologist Carl Cerniglia said.

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