Washington

Photo by Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Netwrk

A ballot measure to expand background checks for gun sales in Washington has lost some support, but still enjoys a healthy lead. That’s according to the latest Elway Poll released Monday. Meanwhile, a competing gun rights measure appears to be in trouble.

The state of Washington has agreed to pay a record amount to settle a case of child abuse and neglect.

The nearly $10 million settlement announced Friday involves five Clark County, Washington, siblings who were starved and beaten by their parents over several years.

The lawyer for the children described the case as a “living nightmare.” The four brothers and one sister were imprisoned, starved, and beaten bloody with a piece of lumber, according to the claim filed by the lawyer on behalf of the children.

Wikimedia Commons / Wikimedia

If you occasionally check your email or send instant messages on your smartphone while driving, the Washington Traffic Safety Commission wants to put you on notice.

They're seeking support from state lawmakers to propose a stiffer no-smartphone-while-driving law in the next legislative session.

The commission reports distracted driving is a factor in 30 percent of the state's traffic fatalities.

Cynthia Goldsmith / Centers for Disease Control

Washington state health officials are echoing statements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and say the risk of Ebola spreading in the U.S. and in Washington state is very low.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

This November, Washington voters will decide whether to require background checks for person-to-person gun sales.

Initiative 594 would close what gun control advocates used to call the “gun show loophole.” But these days, much of the unregulated gun trade is happening online.

Brett Levin / Flickr

People are lining up to buy legal marijuana in Washington. Now the question is how to convince kids not to touch the stuff. A panel of experts briefed Governor Jay Inslee Wednesday on the topic of youth marijuana use.

Scare tactics like “Reefer Madness” are out. Peer-to-peer messaging is in.

John Wiesman is Washington’s Secretary of Health. He told Governor Inslee he wants young people to help develop Washington’s marijuana prevention campaign.

MathTeacherGuy / flickr

The state of Washington paid out nearly $50 million last fiscal year to people who were somehow harmed by the state. The numbers were released Tuesday in an annual report on “tort claim payouts.”

Army Medicine / flickr

Public health authorities in Washington and Idaho are now investigating at least 79 cases of a serious respiratory illness that affects children. The widening disease outbreak is suspected - but not confirmed - to be a rare strain of enterovirus. 


Photo credit: Wikimedia user Jay8g / Wikimedia Commons

California billionaire Tom Steyer is poised to help Democrats try to win back control of the Washington Senate. But first, his NextGen political action committee had to satisfy a quirk in the law. Call it the ten-ten rule. In Washington, political committees have to jump a small hurdle before they can play in Washington’s political sandbox.

Northern Lights Might Be Visible In the Northwest

Sep 12, 2014
NASA / http://www.nasa.gov/

The Northwest could get a a rare look at the northern lights tonight and tomorrow.

The Aurora Borealis is expected to expand further south than usual, thanks to two solar flares affecting the magnetic poles. They'll help make the greenish lights visible.

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