Government and Politics

Washington Teacher Evaluations
4:42 pm
Thu March 8, 2012

Governor Signs New Grading System For Teachers And Principals

Washington Governor Chris Gregoire supports the new teacher and principal evaluations.
Photo credit: Wikimedia user Korribot Wikimedia Commons

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Teachers and Principals in Washington are going to get graded on a new four-tier evaluation system. That’s under a new law signed by Governor Chris Gregoire Thursday. It’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’s necessary.

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Kids Health
5:11 pm
Wed March 7, 2012

Landmark Agreement To Improve Mental Health For Kids In Wash.

Seventeen-year-old Tina (back to camera) speaks with her attorney Emily Cooper. Tina is a plaintiff in a lawsuit against the state of Washington alleging inadequate care for mentally ill kids.
Photo credit: Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Last fall we brought you a series of stories on failures in how the Northwest treats mentally ill youth. Now, a landmark legal agreement announced Wednesday aims to bring about better treatment options for nearly 20,000 Washington kids. These are children who suffer from depression, schizophrenia and other mental illnesses.

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Wash. Budget
4:25 pm
Wed March 7, 2012

Wash. Governor Confirms Need For Special Session

Washington legislators still at odds over how to balance state budget..
Photo by Wikimedia User Visitor7 Wikimedia Commons

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington Governor Chris Gregoire acknowledged Wednesday afternoon that a special session of the legislature will be necessary to re-balance the state budget. But Gregoire says she’s still trying to keep the pressure on lawmakers to come to an agreement.

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Defazio Challengers
3:53 pm
Wed March 7, 2012

Two Robinsons Challenge Oregon Congressman

Oregon's 4th District Representative Peter DeFazop
United State House of Representitives

Springfield Democrat Peter DeFazio will face a father and son in his bid for re-election to Oregon's 4th District seat in the House of Representatives.

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Idaho Caucus
3:42 pm
Wed March 7, 2012

Smooth Sailing For Idaho GOP At First Caucus

Results for Idaho Republican caucuses by county. Counties in orange show a win for Romney, gold for Paul, green for Santorum.
Graph credit: Gage Wikimedia commons

BOISE - Idaho Republicans held their first presidential caucus Tuesday. Mitt Romney won big and it was mostly smooth sailing.

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Young Voter Registration Bill
4:26 pm
Tue March 6, 2012

Young Voter Registration Bill Dies, but the Fight's Not Over

Washington Bus is the organization sponsoring the bill for young voter pre-registration.
Photo credit: Courtesy of Washington Bus

As lawmakers face a pressing deadline for Washington’s legislative session, the budget remains their priority. Other issues have been pushed aside, like a bill supported by a group of politically charged young people.

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Wenatchee Default Rescue Plan
3:45 pm
Tue March 6, 2012

Wenatchee-Area Default Results In New Reform Law

A view of the Toyota Town Center in Wentachee, Wash.
Photo credit: Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. – A follow-up now to a story we first brought you in December. It was about the default of an under-performing hockey and concert arena in Wenatchee . Governor Chris Gregoire recently signed into law a rescue plan for that project. The new law also aims to prevent future municipal defaults.

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Oregon Legislative session
3:37 pm
Tue March 6, 2012

Kitzhaber Praises Legislature

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber signs two measures into law, as lawmakers from both parties look on.
Photo credit: Chris Lehman Northwest News Network

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber is heaping praise on the legislature for its just concluded 2012 session. The Democratic governor saw lawmakers pass all four of his major policy initiatives, including three on the final day of the session Monday. Kitzhaber was surrounded by lawmakers from both parties in his office Tuesday as he signed two of those measures into law.

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Wash. Caucus
5:24 pm
Mon March 5, 2012

Attorney Might Sue Over GOP Benton County, Wash. Caucus

Republican Kim Holdiman of Kennewick, and others were turned away from the Benton County caucus on Saturday.
Photo credit: Anna King Northwest News Network

RICHLAND, Wash. – A Benton County Washington Republican is considering a lawsuit because he is so disgruntled over voters being turned away from overcrowded caucuses. This happened in Kennewick on Saturday. Correspondent Anna King explains.

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Washington Lesislature
5:57 pm
Fri March 2, 2012

GOP Senators Take Control Of Washington Senate

The Senate gallery was packed as Republican Senators took over the chamber from Democrats.
Photo credit: Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. - It's been a day of high drama in the Washington state Senate. Republicans took control of the chamber with the help of three Democratic colleagues.

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