Washington

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Washington Governor Jay Inslee declared a statewide drought emergency Friday.

He says snowpack levels are at unprecedented lows, rivers are drying out and irrigation districts are cutting off water to farmers.

Mentally ill inmates continue to languish in Washington jails despite a recent federal judge’s ruling that the practice is unconstitutional.

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Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed a bill Thursday to boost oil train safety regulations.

It’s one of the ways the state is bracing to take on a growing number of oil trains.

Inslee requested the bill, but he says it’s not enough.

By 2018, the state of Washington should have a treasure trove of data on the cost and quality of health care.

Washington lawmakers are taking heat for an 11 percent pay raise they didn’t ask for.

There's a process in place now for Indian tribes and the state of Washington to jointly regulate marijuana should any tribes choose to legalize and sell it.

Elaine Thompson / Associated Press

Growing marijuana indoors requires a lot of energy -- lights to speed up plant growth, dehumidifiers, heating and cooling equipment. Could sustainable outdoor farms be a more environmentally responsible alternative? A group of Washington marijuana growers say yes.

Several workers sit around a  white table in a small room on a marijuana farm in Goldendale, Washington. They’ve got scissors in hand, scales set to carefully measure out grams.

“I am weighing out some weed," said one of the workers. "Yesterday was an 18 hour day trying to get an order out.”

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The top education official in Washington State said teachers could face investigation and schools could lose funding - if the number of students refusing standardized tests keeps rising. 

Washington superintendent Randy Dorn doesn't like the phrase "opt-out."

"It's really a refusal to take an assessment that's required by the federal government," Dorn said.

He said low participation rates could cost schools federal money.

Across the Northwest, farmers are already making tough calls because of this year’s drought. The dismal snowpack is to blame.

Rowan Moore Gerety / Northwest News Network

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