Oregon Jobless Rate
4:13 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Oregon Unemployment Continues To Fall

New numbers out Tuesday show Oregon's unemployment rate continued its gradual decline in February, falling to a seasonally adjusted 6.9 percent.  As David Nogueras reports from Oregon Public Broadcasting, that's the lowest it's been since August of 2008.

The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employers in Oregon added 2,900 jobs last month, marking the 8th consecutive monthly gain in seasonally adjusted non-farm payroll employment. Two thirds of those jobs were in the private sector.

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Washington State Ferries
3:53 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Washington Ferries Chief To Resign

David Moseley, the head of Washington State Ferries, with Washington Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond.
Credit WSDOT / Flickr

The head of Washington State Ferries says he will step down on April 15th after six years on the job. David Moseley made his announcement Tuesday. His resignation comes as the nation’s largest ferry system continues to encounter choppy seas.

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Northwest News
9:10 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Helicopter Crash Near Seattle's Space Needle

This image, provided by the Washington State Department of Transportation, shows black smoke from the helicopter crash in downtown Seattle.
Credit 7:37 a.m. on Tuesday. Credit Twitter Photo/WSDOT

Two people were killed in the crash of a news helicopter near the Seattle Space Needle Tuesday morning.  They were identified as longtime KOMO-TV news photographer Bill Strothman, 62, of Bothell, and pilot Gary Pfitzner, 59, of Issaquah.  

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Oil Train Legislation
7:09 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Washington Legislature Fails To Pass Comprehensive Oil Train Legislation

More oil is moving through Washington state from the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota. That has many concerned about oil train safety. The oil has proven extremely flammable, causing several explosions in North America.

State legislators on both sides of the aisle introduced bills to address the concerns.

But the session ended last week without a compromise.

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Idaho Gay Rights
6:56 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Multiple Protests, Arrests, But Is Idaho Any Closer To Gay Rights?

"Add the Words" protesters encircle the upper level of the rotunda at the Idaho Capitol. They put a hand over their mouth to symbolize how they've been "silenced" by lawmakers, who have declined to hold a hearing on an anti-discrimination bill.
Credit Jessica Robinson

This winter, protests hit the Idaho Capitol at a level rarely seen in Boise. Gay rights activists blocked entrances and were marched away in handcuffs. They want Idaho's Republican-controlled legislature to pass an anti-discrimination law similar to those in Oregon and Washington. It would make it illegal for employers, landlords and most businesses to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Lawmakers plan to wrap up the session this Friday without ever printing the bill.

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Tribal News
5:38 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Nooksack Vote Shows Divide on Disenrollment Struggle

This past weekend’s election on the Nooksack reservation near Bellingham leaves an uncertain future for hundreds of its members.

The tribe is seeking to remove about 15 percent of its people.

As Liz Jones reports, this tribal disenrollment would be the largest in the state’s history.

Tribal members describe record turnout Saturday, as Nooksack voters weighed in on candidates for its governing council. More than 700 of the tribe’s 2,000 people voted.

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Farming
3:47 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Northwest Women Farmers Gather To Strategize Land Management

Women farmers met this weekend in Vancouver, WA, Idaho Falls, ID and Corvallis, OR to share strategies for managing their land. Amelia Templeton reports Washington State University organized a video conference in a dozen cities across the Northwest to help women farmers connect.

According to the latest census data, women make up about 20 percent of farm operators in Oregon and Washington and just 12 percent in Idaho. Their numbers have fallen since the 2007 census.

Lorrie Conway grew up on a farm. Now she runs a small goat dairy in Camas, WA.

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Hanford
3:37 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Secretary Moniz Meets With Washington Governor On Hanford

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee met with Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz on Monday.
Credit Office of the Governor

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says the US Department of Energy is failing to provide him a “comprehensive” Hanford cleanup plan. The Democrat's comments follow a face-to-face meeting with the Secretary of Energy who made a special trip to meet with the governor.

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Mout Ashland Closure
7:17 am
Mon March 17, 2014

A Lost Season For An Oregon Ski Area

Mount Ashland has four chairlifts that typically run through their normal December thru mid-April season.
Credit Ben Haley

Southern Oregon’s Mount Ashland announced Friday that it won’t open at all this season because of a lack of snow.

This is the first canceled season in the ski area's fifty-year history.

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Lamprey Dams
7:02 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Swim, Lamprey, Swim!

The Lamprey is a jawless fish which has a toothy, funnel-like mouth.
Credit USFWS Pacific

An eel-like fish native to the Northwest can now more easily make it up the Columbia River. Managers at the Columbia’s McNary Dam have installed a new passage system for Pacific lamprey – the first of its kind for the toothy fish.

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