Spokane

A new proposed ballot initiative in Spokane, Washington, could prohibit coal and oil companies from transporting their products through the city by rail. It comes after the city council rolled back a similar effort last month.

This time around, the proposal targets the owners of the rail cars and not the railroad companies tasked with transporting them.

Cayuse Mountain Fire Information / Northwest News Network

Firefighters continue to slow the growth of a wildfire that’s threatening the Spokane Indian Reservation, and the town of Wellpinit . The fire is now about half contained. This weekend’s forecast has crews on edge.

Zack W / Flickr

On a near-daily basis, oil trains pass through the heart of Spokane past two major hospitals, a handful of schools and across an aquifer that serves nearly half a million people.

Robert Ashworth / Flickr

It’s been ten years in the making, but the Spokane tribe has won approval from Governor Inslee for its Casino in Airway Heights. The tribe says it will be an economic boon that will bring thousands of new jobs, but not all are happy with the announcement.

Ephrata Man Leaves Lasting Impression After Death

Apr 27, 2016
Cancer Can't / www.facebook.com/cancercant.info

Picture this: You have a cabinet full of expensive, potentially life-saving medication, but you can’t use it. Do you just throw them away or is there another solution?

 

Joe Mabel / Wikimedia

Washington Governor Jay Inslee visited Spokane Tuesday to meet with local officials dealing with the aftermath of a major windstorm that knocked out power to tens of thousands of area residents.
 

The Governor met with officials from electrical utilities and Spokane city and county officials to discuss recovery efforts following the storm. He was told that while there were 180,000 homes and businesses without power following last Tuesday’s storm, there are still about 20,000 without power.

Fire crews have been making progress on the Rutter Canyon fire, burning just north of the Spokane city limits. The 150 acre fire was 25 percent contained by Thursday morning.

Another Fire Threatening Spokane Area

Aug 12, 2015
AP Images

Fire crews are again battling a wildfire just north of the Spokane city limits. The 150-acre fire broke out late Tuesday afternoon near the Little Spokane River.

Crews believe they are making progress, but the weather could create problems.

The Rutter Canyon fire broke out in difficult-to-access terrain. The heavily wooded area is the site of many homes. About 30 residences remain on a level two evacuation notice Wednesday, meaning residents should be ready to leave on a moments notice.

nikia / Flickr

There is promising news on the Little Spokane fire burning just north of Spokane, even as the region is braced for dry lightning and winds in the weather forecast.

Spokane Faith Leaders Decry 'Death To Islam' Graffiti

Jul 9, 2015

Muslim leaders and Christian clergy in Spokane are asking for a federal hate crime investigation into anti-Muslim graffiti discovered on the Fourth of July. Someone scrawled the phrase “Death to Islam” on the side of a Bosnian heritage center.

Public health officials are concerned about several major athletic events in the Northwest this weekend.

Washington Department of Corrections

A man sentenced to decades in prison for the shotgun slaying of a Spokane pizza delivery driver won’t go free – at least for now. A Washington sentencing board announced Monday that Daniel Paul Delgado is more likely than not to commit a new crime.

Spokane police say they believe a former Pasco, Washington, police officer accused of a 1986 homicide may have assaulted other women.

A former police officer from Pasco, Washington, has been charged with a homicide from nearly three decades ago.

Spokane Measles Quarantine Includes Six Infants

May 28, 2015
Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Six infants may have been exposed to the measles in a recent outbreak in the Spokane area.

It’s the first measles outbreak in Spokane in two decades. Both cases are in unvaccinated adults. Both are recovering.

But the potential infection of infants before the cases were discovered is especially worrisome, says Dorothy MacEachern . She’s an epidemiologist with the Spokane Regional Health District. The infants were too young to be vaccinated -- the measles vaccine is usually done at 12 months -- and MacEachern says measles in babies can lead to ear infections, pneumonia …

ILR / Flickr

More students are complying with state law in the Spokane School District when it comes to immunizations.

Washington state law says before a child can attend school, parents need to provide proof of immunization status or have signed a certificate of exemption form.

The Spokane School District started enforcing that rule in earnest this week.

District spokesman Kevin Morrison said a number of students were sent home on Monday, for at least one classroom period.

Google Images

Medical marijuana activists are reacting to Tuesday’s verdict in federal court in Spokane, in which three people were convicted of growing marijuana in a state where medical and recreational marijuana are legal. The three defendants were found guilty of growing marijuana, but not on the scale the federal prosecution maintained. They were also acquitted of charges related to selling marijuana, and possession of firearms.

Kari Boiter of the group American for Safe Access, says the fact the jury acquitted the defendants on four out of five charges meant they knew the truth.

Hendrike / Wikimedia Commons

The case of a northeast Washington family accused of growing and selling marijuana has gone to the jury in a federal trial in Spokane.

The closing arguments in the case began Monday and continued briefly Tuesday morning. The judge sent the jury to the deliberation room shortly after 9 a.m.

The federal case is unusual in that it accused a family of producing and selling marijuana in Washington, where both medical marijuana and recreational pot are legal. The family claimed they were growing marijuana for medical purposes.

AP Images

The trial began Wednesday in federal court in Spokane for a group of people accused of growing marijuana near Kettle Falls in northeast Washington. The case is seen as a test of federal drug laws, in a state that has legalized recreational and medical marijuana.

In the case known as the Kettle Falls Five, there are now only three defendants. Charges were dropped earlier this month against 71-year-old Larry Harvey, who has been diagnosed with stage five pancreatic cancer. Miller's family members are accused of growing marijuana, which they say was for medicinal purposes.

The US Department of Justice has found leadership was lacking amongst Spokane police for more than eight years. This came in a list of 42 recommendations handed down by the federal COPS program to the Spokane Police Department Friday.

The recommendations came after the police department requested a federal review of its use of force practices. It stems from a 2006 case, in which Spokane man Otto Zehm was beaten by police and died.

COPS Director Ron Davis says they reviewed more than 200 use-of-force cases from the past five years.

Spokane’s Shawn Vestal Wins PEN Prize For Debut Fiction

Sep 30, 2014
Beowulf Sheehan / PEN American Center

“Faith became a larger and larger part of the book as I began to shape it and write the later stories. And for me, that’s just Mormonism. That’s what faith is. That's my background, and so that's the prism through which I can look at the subject."

A Northwest writer is this year’s winner of a prestigious PEN award. Shawn Vestal of Spokane won the prize for debut fiction Monday night in New York.

Photo credit: ELBAZ / Wikimedia commons

By Friday morning, Washington State University leaders could approve one of the biggest educational ventures the school has seen in decades. A new report shows WSU is ready for a full-fledged medical school in Spokane.

Spokane Indians Baseball Club

Football season has kicked off another round of scrutiny over how professional sports teams use Native American mascots. But in eastern Washington, a minor league baseball team has earned the approval of its native namesake.

Mark / Flickr

Washington’s recreational marijuana market is open for business. From Seattle to Bellingham to Prosser, marijuana stores opened for business Tuesday. Excited customers lined up, dressed up and celebrated the end of pot prohibition. Olympia Correspondent Austin Jenkins has this wrap-up.

Mary Randlett

It started with the discovery of long-forgotten gravestones in a thicket of bramble and alder. That set one author on the faint trail of a feisty Native American woman and oyster farmer who lived in 19th century western Washington. The biographer is using the resulting book to inspire other Northwesterners - particularly tribal members. She wants to bring out the stories of people who, in her words, have been "left out of our histories." Correspondent Tom Banse reports from Oyster Bay in Mason County, Washington.

Cassandra Profita / EarthFix

Students around the Northwest go to school every day in portable classrooms. These classrooms are an affordable solution to budget-strapped districts that need more space. But they can be bad for student health and performance. That’s why some districts are moving away from portable classrooms.

One district in Spokane has found a solution.

Courtney Flatt brings us part 2 of our special series "Inside the Box."

Washington Gets Its First Charter School

Jan 31, 2014
PRIDE Prep's Facebook

Spokane has approved Washington State’s first charter school after a unanimous vote by the city’s public school board.

Spokane Public Schools received applications earlier this year from three charter school organizations; PRIDE Prep, iLead and the Academy of Arts and Sciences. After submitting applications organizations went through interviews and public forums.  In a vote January 22, the school board unanimously approved the PRIDE Prep school.

ABCD All It Takes For Low-Income Kids To Get A Dentist

Dec 2, 2013
Melissa Clark/Flickr

When a child’s first tooth erupts, the American Dental Association recommends parents get them into the dentist. For low income families, that sometimes isn't an option. But Washington’s low-income kids have more dentist visits than in any other state.

The Northwest programmers behind the computer game Myst are now trying to write their next chapter.

Two sixteen year olds accused of beating and robbing a world war two veteran will be tried as adults in Spokane County District Court. That’s just one new layer in the death of 88 year old Delbert Belton.

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