Northwest News

Northwest Public Radio is a participant and contributor in the Northwest News Network (N3), a collaboration of public radio stations in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Our reporters bring a regional perspective to coverage of Northwest states' government, environment, economy, and other news of widespread interest to residents of the Northwest. Regional news on Northwest Public Radio is a part of Morning Edition every weekday morning, and All Things Considered in the afternoons.

Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman Friday introduced a proposal that would allow election officials to verify the citizenship of voters in the state. It comes in response to questions about whether the suspect in a recent shooting near Seattle voted legally.

Idaho Inventor Unveils Solar Roadways

Sep 30, 2016
Solar Roadways / https://www.facebook.com/solarroadways

Imagine driving on a busy road...without any traffic lines or caution signs. Could it be safe?

You can now use your credit or debit card when you visit the DMV in Oregon. The agency is now accepting plastic at all 60 of its field offices.

Washington’s troubled Western State Hospital has been plagued by ineffective management, staff reductions and turnover. That’s according to a “root cause analysis” report released Thursday.

The passage of a congressional bill that authorizes drinking and wastewater projects nationwide has Northwest tribes celebrating. An amendment to the bill means the 9,000-year-old human remains discovered near Kennewick, Washington, 20 years ago will be returned for final burial.

Attorneys who represent two Oregon foster children are suing the Department of Human Services. The lawyers say DHS violates state and federal law by housing some children in hotels and offices.

Defense Zipping Through Witness List In Oregon Standoff Trial

Sep 29, 2016

Their start was rocky, but the defense attorneys for Ammon Bundy and six others accused of taking over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge picked up speed Wednesday — so much so it appears they could wrap their case up next week.

Toward the end of the day’s session, U.S. District Court Judge Anna Brown observed the defense was quickly moving through its witness list. The day started, however, on much shakier legs.

The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of the Interior Monday announced a $492 million settlement with a number of tribes. It ends decades-long disputes between the tribes and the federal government over land management.

There’s a lot of talk about “dark money” in politics these days. That’s money raised and spent by so-called “social welfare” organizations that don’t have to disclose their donors.

But sometimes these groups will reveal who’s giving them money -- if you ask.

Kai-Huei Yau

The Washington State Historical Society honored NWPR's own Anna King, Kai-Huei Yau and Doug Gast Saturday, September 24 with the David Douglas Award for their Daughters of Hanford series.

 

Multnomah County Sheriff's Office / Associated Press

Defense attorneys for Ammon Bundy and six other people who occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge earlier this year begin presenting their case to jurors today. 

Wikimedia User: lecroitg / Wikimedia Commons

Oregon’s scores on the SAT college entrance exam continue to outpace the national average. More Oregon students are taking the SAT college entrance exam, and scores continue to outpace the national average. The context for Tuesday's scores is complicated.

Torben Hansen / FLICKR Creative Commons

Two law enforcement groups in Oregon say drug possession convictions should result in lighter sentences than they currently do.

For decades, artifacts of life and work from the Manhattan Project and Cold War era at Hanford have been locked away. Now, these historical items are being trucked off the southeast Washington nuclear site and curated at Washington State University Tri-Cities.

Burlington Mourns Mass Shooting

Sep 27, 2016
Stephen Brashear / AP Images

The people of Burlington have left an array of flowers, balloons and handwritten posters outside the small-town mall that is the site of America’s latest mass shooting.

In their second debate, Democratic Governor Jay Inslee and his Republican challenger Bill Bryant sparred over taxes, education funding, transportation and the state’s response to homelessness.

But in the wake of last week’s deadly shooting at Cascade Mall in Skagit County, gun violence was the first issue the candidates were asked to address.

Paladin Justice / Flickr

Prosecutors today charged 20-year-old Arcan Cetin with five counts of first-degree murder in Friday’s mass shooting in Burlington.

A new federal bill was introduced Monday that would further protect whistleblowers at Hanford and other nuclear sites. The legislation was penned by thee Democratic senators: Oregon’s Ron Wyden, Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts, and Claire McCaskill of Missouri.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown has appointed Margaret Salazar as the new head of the state agency that handles works to provide affordable housing. The announcement was made as lawmakers gear up to tackle housing issues during next year's legislative session.

Wildfires: It’s Not All Bad

Sep 26, 2016
InciWeb / http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/

After two devastating years of fires in the Northwest, it seems fire season brings only destruction. In 2014 and 2015 alone, more than half a million acres burned. But wildfires do have an upside.

Burlington Suspect To Have Court Hearing As Community Mourns

Sep 26, 2016
Associated Press / AP Images

The man suspected of fatally shooting five people on Friday at a Burlington shopping mall is scheduled to have his first court appearance today.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

 


Gun rights advocates say Friday night's deadly shooting at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington is an example of why law-abiding citizens should consider arming themselves and why malls and businesses shouldn't ban firearms on the premises.

Three of the candidates for Oregon Secretary of State made their case to voters in Eugene Friday. Democrat Brad Avakian, Republican Dennis Richardson and Alan Zundel of the Pacific Green Party spoke before the Eugene City Club.

A food industry startup from Oregon is ready to sell you something completely different for your mid-morning snack. How about some roasted crickets in cayenne spice or original flavor?

Washington’s largest labor organization has agreed to a $26,000 fine for past campaign finance violations. The attorney general’s office announced the penalty Friday against the Washington State Labor Council.

Chris Lehman / Northwest News Network

 

If a group that rallied at the state capitol in Salem Thursday has its way, Oregon lawmakers will take up two major pieces of legislation designed to improve rights for renters next year.

Outside Looking In: Rancher Describes His View Of The Malheur Occupation

Sep 22, 2016

Harney County rancher Andy Dunbar had perhaps one of the best views of the 41-day occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. He lives right next to it.

“They’re my closest neighbor,” said Dunbar, who testified Thursday in the trial for seven refuge occupiers.

Dunbar’s testimony created a narrative of how the occupation unfolded from someone literally on the outside looking in. Dressed in a plaid shirt tucked into blue jeans with a large belt buckle and hat hair, Dunbar explained the occupation’s effect on his daily life on the ranch.

Oregon college campuses should have better access to sworn police officers and develop active shooter training programs for all students and employees. Those are some of the recommendations in a draft report issued Thursday by a work group convened by the Oregon governor's office.

Alberto G. / Flickr

Parents in Washington state may notice another measurement along with their students’ state test scores. The student growth percentile (SGP) is meant to compare a child’s learning to their peers, but critics say it may not work.

Women and girls in Oregon are more likely to be survivors of sexual violence, and have the highest incidence of reported depression in the country, according to a report released Wednesday on the status of women in the state.

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