Austin Jenkins

Olympia Correspondent

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C-SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut. Austin’s reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists.

Ways To Connect

The death of his prized horse has a Washington state lawmaker warning about a noxious weed that’s spreading in the Northwest. That weed is toxic to horses and can have a gruesome effect on their hooves.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has signed into law a four-year suspension of a voter-approved class size measure. He also signed a two-year delay of a biology test graduation requirement on Tuesday. One rural school superintendent says it makes sense to hold off on these two policies.

HBARRISON / FLICKR

The Washington legislature has passed a budget, but that plan still has one more test to pass.  The Washington Supreme Court has held the legislature in contempt for inadequately funding education. The Washington legislature has passed a budget, but that plan still has one more test to pass. The Washington Supreme Court has held the legislature in contempt for inadequately funding education.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

The Washington state Senate has voted to delay a voter-approved class size measure and a biology test high school graduation requirement. The votes Thursday afternoon pave the way for the legislature to adjourn its third special session Friday. 

Washington Senate Republicans have agreed to suspend a biology exam requirement that’s keeping nearly 2,000 high school students from graduating.

Typically, the Washington legislature is done long before Oregon because of how the legislative calendars work in each state. But not this year.

Billionaire Paul Allen wants wildlife traffickers to feel a bit more pain. Professional initiative sponsor Tim Eyman wants state lawmakers to feel a bit of pain too.

The Washington state Senate Wednesday morning failed to muster a two-thirds vote to suspend a voter-approved class size reduction measure. That could put a $2 billion hole in the freshly passed two-year budget.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee will sign a new two-year budget into law Tuesday – just in time to avert a partial government shutdown. State lawmakers moved quickly to pass the $38 billion budget Monday night after striking a deal that ended weeks of gridlock.

Oregon shoppers and bottled water will remain untaxed in Washington’s next two-year budget, but a couple of other tax exemptions will be eliminated.

Pages