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.

In 2014 and 2015, Washington's prison system experienced a spike in inmate suicides. During those two years 11 inmate deaths were ruled suicides, giving Washington one of the highest prison suicide rates in the country. Austin Jenkins has spent the past year investigating how this happened and how the prison system responded.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP Images

Oregon Rep. Greg Walden told Republican activists Saturday that he’s close to producing a bill that will serve as his party’s chief vehicle for replacing the Affordable Care Act.

Second Oregon Refuge Trial To Go To Jury This Week

Mar 6, 2017
Rick Bowmer / AP Images

The second trial of people linked to last year’s occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge will go to the jury this week.

A measure to crack down on prohibited gun buyers has passed the Washington state House. Lawmakers voted 84 to 13 vote Friday to require gun dealers to alert the State Patrol when someone fails a background check to buy a gun.

Wine scientists and grape growers will converge in the Tri-Cities, Washington, next week to talk about how to produce high-quality wine when the climate is getting more extreme.

Some drivers in the Puget Sound region are experiencing sticker shock over their car tab renewals. That’s because of the formula Sound Transit uses to assess vehicle values as it implements a new tax for light rail expansion.

The Federal Aviation Administration says reports of unsafe flying by civilian drones "have increased dramatically" over the past two years.

The Washington state House has voted to give added protections to sick workers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

A husband and wife from Port Townsend, Washington, are on their way home after being expelled from Guatemala. The Washingtonians and several other international activists narrowly avoided arrest during a maritime abortion rights protest.

With Oregon’s biggest cities in a housing crunch, lawmakers are considering a measure that would require landlords to give specific reasons for evicting a tenant.

Crater Lake National Park / National Park Service

It’s been nearly a month since 10,000 rounds of ammunition were discovered missing from Crater Lake National Park. The reward money has increased and investigators have released a surveillance video.

Three top elected officials in Oregon are now embroiled in a messy political struggle over whether to privatize an 82,500-acre state forest near Coos Bay.

The infighting among Gov. Kate Brown, Treasurer Tobias Read and Secretary of State Dennis Richardson — the three members of the State Land Board — is highly unusual in a state dominated by Democratic officials who tend to prize cooperation over confrontation.

An Oregon court will hear arguments Thursday in a case involving a bakery owner who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

Adam850 / Wikimedia Commons

The University of Oregon could lay off as many as 75 non-tenured faculty in order to cope with a nearly $9 million deficit. the school is also considering a more than ten percent hike in tuition for in-state students.

Courtney Flatt / EarthFix

President Trump Tuesday issued an executive order to weaken clean water rules. In the Northwest, environmentalists say that’s bad news for fish. Farm and industry groups are pleased with the order.

http://walden.house.gov/ / Wikimedia Commons

Oregonians worried about what the Trump Administration is going to do to the Affordable Care Act were offered hope today by the state’s only Republican congressman, Greg Walden. 

Michael Werner / OPB

A decade ago bats in the Northeast started dying by the millions. The culprit was a disease that for years, stayed largely confined to the eastern U.S. and Canada. But in 2016, the disease suddenly and mysteriously appeared in the Pacific Northwest. Ever since researchers have been racing to find out what bats here are in for.

Oregon Department of Forestry

The future of America’s public lands has been a focus for debate recently. A federal bill this year would have transferred 3.3 million acres of federal land to the states. It was withdrawn earlier February, due to objections both sides of the aisle. But that doesn’t mean the issue is settled.

Cowlitz County has approved a key permit for a controversial methanol plant proposed on the Columbia River in the port city of Kalama.

The county’s hearing examiner Mark Scheibmeir concluded on Monday that the $1.8 billion project may proceed – provided developer NW Innovation Works complies with a long list of shoreline development permit conditions that require environmental and safety protections.

Last fall, the Washington Supreme Court made a decision many home builders and landowners call harmful. The ruling, known as the Hirst decision, requires counties to ensure adequate water supply before granting a permit to build.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is urging the Trump administration to view marijuana as an economic opportunity. Her comments came as Attorney General Jeff Sessions hinted Tuesday at a federal crackdown on recreational cannabis.

Comments Donald Trump made on the campaign trail led to concerns that he would create a database to track Muslims in the U.S.. In a unanimous vote Tuesday, the Washington state House has said “no” to cooperating with such an effort.

Washington state’s 105-day legislative session is almost at the halfway point. But a final, bipartisan deal on school funding could still be months away.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Governors from around the country are here in Washington for the winter meeting of the National Governors Association. On today's agenda - a visit to the White House and a meeting with President Trump.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Transgender people in Oregon would have an easier way to change their identity on government documents under a bill being considered by Oregon lawmakers.

Scientists have new cautionary predictions based on the low Northwest snowpack levels of the last two winters.

President Donald Trump’s immigration policies created a sense of urgency at the annual Latino Legislative Day the Washington state Capitol Monday. Several hundred activists converged in Olympia, Washington, with a message for state lawmakers.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee used words like “shocked” and “troubled” after attending events with President Donald Trump and members of his administration in Washington, D.C., in recent days. And the Democrat said he’s “more concerned,” not less concerned, after meeting with Trump Monday.

If you’ve ever seen the movie Con Air, you know that high-risk prison inmates are sometimes moved around the country on charter flights. It turns out the state of Washington has its own version of Con Air.

Hundreds Rally In Eugene To Support ACA

Feb 27, 2017
Rachael McDonald / KLCC

Senator Jeff Merkley held a rally Saturday on the Lane Community College campus in Eugene in support of the Affordable Care Act. The rally was part of a national day of action by democratic leaders.

Pages