Azusa Uchikura http://nwpr.org en Wash. Voters May Find Referendum Confusing http://nwpr.org/post/wash-voters-may-find-referendum-confusing <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Over the next few months in Washington, someone may approach you with a petition. Opponents of same-sex marriage are trying to force a referendum vote on Washington&rsquo;s new marriage equality law. There&rsquo;s also a separate initiative to define marriage as between one man and one woman. Meanwhile, gay rights supporters are also collecting signatures for their own non-binding pledge. Confused? Azusa Uchikura has this voter&rsquo;s guide. Mon, 12 Mar 2012 12:30:15 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4700 at http://nwpr.org Petitioning To Repeal Same-Sex Marriage In Wash. Begins http://nwpr.org/post/petitioning-repeal-same-sex-marriage-wash-begins <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Tuesday in Olympia, a county judge will word-smith the ballot language for the a referendum challenging the same-sex marriage in Washington. Christian conservatives want to overturn the legislature&rsquo;s approval of gay marriage last month. Mon, 12 Mar 2012 12:20:34 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4698 at http://nwpr.org Governor Signs New Grading System For Teachers And Principals http://nwpr.org/post/governor-signs-new-grading-system-teachers-and-principals <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Teachers and Principals in Washington are going to get graded on a new four-tier evaluation system. That&rsquo;s under a new law signed by Governor Chris Gregoire Thursday. It&rsquo;ll judge teachers as unsatisfactory, basic, proficient or distinguished. The new rankings will replace the current pass/fail format. The change is estimated to cost $5.3 million , but Gregoire says it&rsquo;s necessary. Fri, 09 Mar 2012 00:42:33 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4535 at http://nwpr.org Governor Signs New Grading System For Teachers And Principals Tension Lingers After Coup In Washington Senate http://nwpr.org/post/tension-lingers-after-coup-washington-senate <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Tension lingers in Olympia as Washington legislators head into what is supposed to be the last week of session. The task of re-balancing the state budget was put into disarray on Friday when Republicans and centrist Democrats took over the state Senate. Tue, 06 Mar 2012 14:10:20 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4362 at http://nwpr.org Tension Lingers After Coup In Washington Senate Coal Export Terminal Opponents Submit Petition http://nwpr.org/post/coal-export-terminal-opponents-submit-petition <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Some Washington citizens are voicing opposition about plans to build three new coal export terminals in their communities. Opponents of those proposals delivered more than 40,000 signatures to the state capitol in Olympia Wednesday. Thu, 01 Mar 2012 13:50:37 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4087 at http://nwpr.org Washington Unemployment Drops To 8.3 Percent http://nwpr.org/post/washington-unemployment-drops-83-percent <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Washington&rsquo;s economy is looking up. New numbers out Wednesday show the state&rsquo;s unemployment rate is down to 8.3 percent. The January number is 0.3 percent lower than the unemployment rate for December. Thu, 01 Mar 2012 00:13:04 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 4060 at http://nwpr.org New Task Force Will Investigate Powell Deaths http://nwpr.org/post/new-task-force-will-investigate-powell-deaths <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; It&rsquo;s been two weeks since Josh Powell allegedly killed himself and his two children in a house fire near Graham, Washington. A new task force announced Thursday will investigate the deaths. Meanwhile, the grandparents of the two Powell boys are pushing for changes in Child Protective Services. Fri, 24 Feb 2012 01:20:52 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 3711 at http://nwpr.org New Task Force Will Investigate Powell Deaths Wash. Lawmakers Propose New DUI Penalties http://nwpr.org/post/wash-lawmakers-propose-new-dui-penalties <p>OLYMPIA, Wash. &ndash; Washington lawmakers are taking a multi-faceted approach to crack down on drunk driving. These proposals would increase jail time and other penalties. Another measure could require a drunk driver who kills a parent to pay child support for the surviving children. That proposal had a hearing Wednesday. Azusa Uchikura has more from Olympia. Thu, 23 Feb 2012 13:56:23 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 3655 at http://nwpr.org Wash. Lawmakers Propose New DUI Penalties Higher Fines On Johns, Pimps Would Benefit Anti-Prostitution Programs http://nwpr.org/post/higher-fines-johns-pimps-would-benefit-anti-prostitution-programs <p>SEATAC, Wash. &ndash; Critics of backpage.com have accused the classifieds website of promoting child prostitution. The company has defended its policies but lawmakers in Olympia are considering new requirements for the site. They are also considering more funding for anti-prostitution programs. And where do they plan to get this extra money? From the Johns and pimps themselves. Azusa Uchikura has this profile of a program in SeaTac called the Genesis Project. Wed, 15 Feb 2012 14:31:09 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 3171 at http://nwpr.org Higher Fines On Johns, Pimps Would Benefit Anti-Prostitution Programs Santorum Rally Draws Supporters, Opponents, Undecided http://nwpr.org/post/santorum-rally-draws-supporters-opponents-undecided <p>TACOMA, Wash. &ndash; Several hundred people gathered at the Washington Historical Museum in Tacoma Monday to get a glimpse of Rick Santorum on a campaign swing through the Northwest. In the crowd were supporters, opponents and undecided voters. Azusa Uchikura reports from Tacoma. Tue, 14 Feb 2012 14:41:25 +0000 Azusa Uchikura 3103 at http://nwpr.org Santorum Rally Draws Supporters, Opponents, Undecided