Friday, February 24, 2017

Spokane opens doors to homeless families at daytime shelter

Posted By on Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 2:30 PM

It’s Thursday morning. You wake up before 7 a.m. after staying in a shelter overnight, step out into the bone-chilling 24-degree weather, and have to figure out where you can take your kids for the day until the warm space reopens in the evening.

Until December, your only option might have been to go to the library, a grocery store, anywhere public enough to let you hang out for a while sheltered from the cold.

Now, says Steve Allen, executive director of Family Promise of Spokane, for the first time in Spokane’s history, homeless families have another option during the day, designed just for them.

Open Doors

Allen was joined by Mayor David Condon and other city officials Thursday as they 

Spokane Mayor David Condon speaks at a ribbon cutting for the city's first daytime shelter for homeless families Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017. - SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL
  • Samantha Wohlfeil
  • Spokane Mayor David Condon speaks at a ribbon cutting for the city's first daytime shelter for homeless families Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017.

celebrated the recent opening of Open Doors family day shelter, which offers hot showers, case management and emergency shelter to families in need.

The shelter, located off Richard Allen Court in East Central, is open 7 days a week from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Since opening in early December, the shelter has had about 30 to 40 people walk through the door every day, says Joe Ader, Open Doors director.

“We’re one of few shelters that doesn’t separate men and women, so families can stay together,” Ader says.

Continue reading »

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , , ,

Did the Spokesman-Review just jinx the undefeated Zags?

Posted By on Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 9:58 AM

Want to see into the future? Subscribers to the Spokesman-Review are able to do just that today — reading about Gonzaga's perfect regular season record (30-0!) a day before the Zags play their final game on Saturday against BYU. (Thursday night, the Gonzaga crushed San Diego to take their record to 29-0 on the season.)

You can find the digital version of the four-page section, with tomorrow's date, on the SR's website this morning — with the paper declaring, "After completing a perfect regular season, Gonzaga sets its sights on making an unprecedented postseason run."

Obviously, it's a safe bet that the No.1 team in America will beat BYU on their home court — catch the action on ESPN at 7:15 Saturday — but then again ... talk to old President Dewey about hubris in newspapers.

UPDATED 11:40 AM TODAY: Fearing the wrath of the basketball gods — and Zag fans everywhere — the Spokesman-Review has now taken down the special, end-of-the-season section.

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , ,

Restaurant week kicks off, Spokane physicians at a loss, and morning headlines

Posted By on Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 9:48 AM


click image Fudge from Saranac Public House, one of the 101 eateries participating in Inlander Restaurant Week.
  • Fudge from Saranac Public House, one of the 101 eateries participating in Inlander Restaurant Week.

FOOD: Inlander Restaurant Week (Feb. 23-Mar. 4) is in full swing — check out some of our menu picks, learn more about the charity and people this week benefits, some food trends  you can try out, and more in our IRW Guide out now.

MUSIC: Julia Keefe's path to this year's Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival headlining stage started as a Spokane middle-schooler.

FOOD: New all-ages venue Lucky Puppy joins its big brother Scotty's Doghouse as a Logan neighborhood hangout.


Docs can't tell us what's up
The two Spokane physicians who filed a $191 million bankruptcy struggled to explain their own personal finances at their hearing yesterday, much less the business decisions behind their failed medical companies. (Spokesman-Review)
click image Gavin Grimm, 17, a transgender student with a lawsuit before the Supreme Court next month, was embraced by Vanessa Ford, whose daughter is transgender, at a rally outside the White House on Wednesday. - AL DRAGO/THE NEW YORK TIMES
  • AL DRAGO/The New York Times
  • Gavin Grimm, 17, a transgender student with a lawsuit before the Supreme Court next month, was embraced by Vanessa Ford, whose daughter is transgender, at a rally outside the White House on Wednesday.

The face behind the case
Meet 17-year-old Gavin Grimm, the transgender student and lead plaintiff in the "bathroom debate" court case
 that's headed to the Supreme Court. (New York Times)

Conservative conference
Trump just finished speaking at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC, the event Milo Yiannopoulos was disinvited from recently for his comments about sex between "younger boys and older men").

Trump, who skipped CPAC in 2016 and was booed when he went in 2015, said in nationalist, campaign-era overtones that he's "not representing the globe. I'm representing your country." (CNN)
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: ,

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Washington schools chief says transgender students will be protected despite Trump

But Idaho is a different story

Posted By on Thu, Feb 23, 2017 at 11:20 AM


Wednesday, President Donald Trump rolled back federal guidelines for transgender students that required schools to let those students use the bathrooms of their choice.

The move essentially leaves it up to the states to make decisions on protecting transgender students. And in Washington and Idaho, those protections look much different.

The federal decision won't impact how transgender students are treated in Washington schools, says Chris Reykdal, Washington state Superintendent of Public Instruction. Washington state law will continue to protect transgender students, and losing the federal guidelines shouldn't affect any district policies.

"Our state laws are explicit," Reykdal says. "We must not discriminate against our students, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation."

The federal guidelines unveiled last year by President Obama made more of a difference in Idaho. When Obama directed school districts to let transgender students use the restrooms matching their gender identities in May, Idaho leaders, including Superintentent Sherri Ybarra, objected to the protections. Ybarra called the move "extreme top-down overreach," in a statement, and Gov. Butch Otter said the guidelines disregard states' rights and local control of schools.

The words "gender identity" or "sexual orientation" are not included in Idaho's human rights law.

Continue reading »

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , ,

Kalispel Tribe announces family-friendly expansion for Northern Quest

Posted By on Thu, Feb 23, 2017 at 9:39 AM

An artist's rendering of the future look of the Northern Quest Resort & Casino.
  • An artist's rendering of the future look of the Northern Quest Resort & Casino.

The Kalispel Tribe announced Wednesday its plans for a $20 million expansion of its resort and casino in Airway Heights, most it focused on additional options for people less interested in gambling and more interested in a family getaway.

A supersized arcade focused on non-violent games, a children's entertainment center and daycare, additional dining and shopping options and a new high-end RV park are all part of the expansion that will include 40,000 additional square feet connected to the current south side of the Northern Quest Resort & Casino building.

"We're excited to bring additional family-friendly entertainment options to the West Plains," said Phil Haugen, Kalispel Tribal Economic Authority COO via press release. "For many years, our vision has included the desire to develop the property south of Northern Quest and create an even larger entertainment destination with a true sense of place and community."

The resort plans to break ground on the expansion this spring, with a grand opening of the new features envisioned for spring of 2018. The addition will continue the ongoing evolution of the West Plains as an entertainment destination, which also includes the expected 2017 opening of the Spokane Tribe's Hard Rock Hotel and casino in Airway Heights.
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: ,

"New" planets discovered, city still mum on street director ouster and other news

Posted By on Thu, Feb 23, 2017 at 9:25 AM


Former Spokane Street Director Mark Serbousek
  • Former Spokane Street Director Mark Serbousek
NEWS: Spokane city officials are still mum on reasons why longtime Street Director Mark Serbousek was booted from his position.

MUSIC: Jack Casady and Jorma Kaukonen will bring their acoustic blues to the Chateau Rive this Saturday. They're playing two sets 7:30 (sold out) and 10 pm.

GONZAGA: Women weren't allowed to attend Gonzaga University until 1948. A new on-campus exhibit shows how they shaped the campus then and for future students.


Gender Discrimination Suit Settled
The Department of Justice settled a gender discrimination lawsuit with a former Spokane prosecutor. Katherine "Jill" Bolton claimed she was paid less than a male colleague and her authority was undermined by men in the office. Bolton's attorney, Mary Schultz, said the $225,000 settlement was the largest paid by the DOJ for a gender discrimination suit. (Spokesman Review)

Bathroom Discrimination Bolstered
• President Donald Trump reversed Obama's order allowing students to use the bathroom in line with their gender identity. Trump's order reportedly divided members of his cabinet with Attorney General Jeff Sessions opposing the expansion of transgender rights and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos initially opposing Trump's decision. (New York Times)

Racial Discrimination Struck Down
• The U.S. Supreme Court ruled yesterday that a man sentenced to death in Texas can seek a new sentence after his own defense team called a witness who testified that the man was more likely to commit new crimes because he is black. (The Atlantic)

New Planets?
• Astronomers say they've discovered at least seven Earth-sized planets orbiting a single star 40 light years away. The planets might have water on their surfaces, and could therefore support life. (CNN)
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: ,

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Spokane Mayor to help celebrate new daytime emergency shelter for families

Posted By on Wed, Feb 22, 2017 at 1:22 PM

Spokane Mayor David Condon and organizers from Family Promise of Spokane will celebrate the recent opening of the city's first daytime emergency shelter for families on Thursday morning. 
Mayor Condon
  • Mayor Condon
The ribbon cutting is set for 11 am tomorrow at 631 S. Richard Allen Ct., outside the Emmanuel Family Life Center.

The shelter, called Open Doors, opened in early December, and is open to anyone who is homeless with children. It's open every day from 7:30 am to 7:30 pm.
It was made possible with help from a city grant, and is operated in partnership with the Salvation Army, which runs a night shelter.

Light snacks and a tour of Open Doors will be offered during the event.
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , , ,

Seattle may sue Trump, city splits with meter service, and morning headlines

Posted By on Wed, Feb 22, 2017 at 9:46 AM

The shadow of Frank Straub remains cast over City Hall
  • The shadow of Frank Straub remains cast over City Hall



Remember former Police Chief Frank Straub and his incredibly expensive lawsuit against the City of Spokane? Well, even though it got tossed out by a District Court judge, it's currently under appeal in the 9th Circuit.

A couple more of those, and we're talking real bake-sale money
The Wellpinit School District got busted by the State Auditor for getting $400,000 dollars in state funding it shouldn't have.

Here comes the Fastball!
And other '90s rock bands to the Northern Quest Casino.


In City of Spokane, Parking Meter Gets Busted For Not Paying YOU!
The company that the City of Spokane was using for pay-by-phone parking meters owes the city $80,000, so the city is ditching it. (Spokesman-Review)

It's like Seattle doesn't like Trump or something
Seattle Mayor Ed Murray may sue Trump to figure out, among other stuff, how, exactly, he's defining sanctuary cities. (Spokesman-Review)

Swedish Fishy
The Seattle Times claims the head of Swedish Health Services, after it exposed all sorts of shady shenanigans in its neurosurgery institute. (Seattle Times)


Basket of Deportables
Trump's immigration plans will dramatically expand the types of unauthorized immigrants who are deported. (New York Times)

Bathroom Pass?
Ed Secretary Betsy DeVos doesn't like the Trump administration's proposal to rescind protections for transgender students in public schools. But Jeff Sessions is a firm supporter of it. (New York Times)

Minus the Milo
The Conservative Political Action Conference is today, and it's Trumpier than ever. (Washington Post)
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , ,

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The lawsuit from former Police Chief Frank Straub? It's still happening.

Posted By on Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 4:20 PM

With the appeal of police Chief Frank Straub before the Ninth Circuit, Straub's attorney, Mary Schultz, says the case has a pretty good shot of going to trial. - PHOTO COURTESY OF MARY SCHULTZ
  • Photo courtesy of Mary Schultz
  • With the appeal of police Chief Frank Straub before the Ninth Circuit, Straub's attorney, Mary Schultz, says the case has a pretty good shot of going to trial.

The fallout over the forced resignation of former police Chief Frank Straub — way back in September of 2015 — has already cost the city of Spokane more than they ever paid Straub as police chief.

Even though the public has moved on from the controversy, the legal case is still looming.

And as the City of Spokane refuses to give even the city council an explanation for why it booted Mark Serbousek from his role as street director, the ongoing legal case may provide some insight into why the city has been so tight-lipped.

Sure, in June, a U.S. District Court judge dismissed Straub's due process lawsuit in summary judgment — a major blow to Straub's case. But Straub quickly appealed to the Ninth Circuit. And the Ninth Circuit took the case.

For months, Straub's attorney Mary Schultz, and attorneys for the city, Mayor David Condon, City Administrator Theresa Sanders and former City Attorney Nancy Isserlis have been filing briefs in the appeal.

Schultz says she's pretty confident that it will be remanded back to the district trial court.

"This has a very important message to it, that is really going to need the Ninth Circuit to rule on it," Schultz says. "It’s the Fourteenth Amendment right to due process."

The lynchpin of Schultz's arguments come down to Condon's decision to distribute two letters from members of police leadership, accusing Straub of "unreasonable emotional outbursts, personal attacks, threats regarding ... employment and position, scare tactics, retaliation, degradation of character, demeaning and condescending treatment" and "profane and highly inappropriate language."

Continue reading »

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , ,

State auditor: Wellpinit School District overfunded $400,000 for ALE programs

Posted By on Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 1:07 PM

A state auditor's office investigation has found that Wellpinit School District took more than $400,000 in state funding that it shouldn't have during the 2014-15 school year because it didn't report enrollment in two "Alternative Learning Experience" programs properly.

But Cheryl Thresher, who managed the state auditor's office investigation, stresses that the district did not deliberately violate compliance procedures to get more state funding.

The issues stemmed from Wellpinit School District's two Alternative Learning Experience programs, otherwise known as ALE programs: Wellpinit Alliance - Columbia Basin J.C. in Moses Lake, and Wellpinit - Fort Semco High School. ALEs offer individualized onsite and online curricula to students outside of a traditional school setting.

Districts are supposed to report the number of hours students participate in the programs to the Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and those hours are used as the basis for funding. But according to the state auditor's office, the district did not have internal controls in place to follow compliance with the reporting procedures, and it over-reported student hours. That led to the district being overfunded by $412,923.

"There are a lot of compliance requirements to claim funding for ALE programs," Thresher says.

In its investigation, the auditor's office looked at 14 students during the 2014-15 school year. The office found instances where the district claimed more hours than the student learning plan indicated, that monthly evaluations were missing, and that other requirements for reporting were not done properly.

The office recommends that the district put internal control in place to ensure all ALE compliance requirements are met prior to claiming the students for funding.

In its response to the investigation, the district says it has done that.

"Our district plans to work closely with OSPI to address and correct the auditor's findings," it said in a statement. "Having a clean audit for our ALE program is important to the district — as reflected in prior desk audits where our program was found to be compliant."

View the auditor's full report here.
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , ,

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
50th Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

50th Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival @ University of Idaho

Through Feb. 25

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Recent Comments

Top Topics in Bloglander

News (129)

Music (28)

Arts & Culture (17)

Sports (15)

What's Up? (14)

© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation