State, Legislators Face Costly Hurdle in Repairing Mental Health System

In the seven hours Linea spent waiting for a psychiatric bed to open up, she witnessed patients tied to gurneys in the hallways and others sedated for acting out in a psychotic episode.



Washington State Talks Strategies for Weaning Solar Off Subsidies

Almost 10 years after instituting financial incentives for Washington residents to install solar panels, the state is debating if those tax breaks are too generous for an electricity source that amounts to a pittance of its renewable energy portfolio.

Did State Value Money Over Justice in Horrible Abuse Case?

The case in question resulted in the largest ever settlement payout by the state in a child abuse case — $9.75 million for five siblings who suffered terrible abuse at the hands of their parents. Faced with a tough case, internal records show that the AG’s office signed contracts with experts for hundreds of thousands of dollars in an attempt to downplay the long-term psychological problems the five siblings could be expected to experience.

Unions Endorse Proposed Oil Transfer Terminal at Port

The Columbia Pacific Building Trades Council, Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters and International Union of Operating Engineers said Thursday that they’ve endorsed a proposed oil transfer terminal at the Port of Vancouver and have reached an agreement with the project’s backers to ensure the terminal would be built with union labor.

Where Are the Charter Schools?

While the state sees a dramatic decline in applications, Tacoma and Seattle worry about those already approved. It’s hard to say how many more charter schools might be coming down the pike, given the drop-off in numbers. Still, the Tacoma board is considering lobbying the legislature to change the law in a way that instructs the commission to consider how many charter schools are in any given city.

Four State Supreme Court Justices Face Little Competition in Races

Four state Supreme Court justices are asking voters to return them to the bench on the November ballot, but two have no opponents and the other two face nominal opposition. The nonpartisan court races are mostly noteworthy because they have not generated the spirited campaigns and fundraising seen over the past several years.

Democrats’ Senate Hopes Ride on a Former Bellingham Council Member

Three to seven of the Senate’s 49 seats could be realistically considered in play in November, with the 42nd being less tight than some of the other six. On paper, Democrats believe, Fleetwood of Bellingham has a good chance of upsetting Ericksen, R-Ferndale. But right now, the odds favor Ericksen.

Unemployment Rate Ticks Up in Washington in September

Washington state’s unemployment rate crept up slightly in September to 5.7 percent, compared to 5.6 percent in August, according to the new monthly employment report the Employment Security Department issued Wednesday. The increase was attributed to a loss of 600 nonfarm jobs in the state that month, with the private sector dropping 2,600 jobs while […]