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  • Low Expectations
  • Low Expectations

    The Washington Legislature adjourned last week. Here's what they accomplished — and what they neglected to do
  • Who's Paying?
  • Who's Paying?

    Sen. Andy Billig's new bill would keep "dark money" from infiltrating Washington state elections
  • A New Day
  • A New Day

    Four new laws that change the way Washington works.
      Four new laws that change the way Washington works.
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  • 'I Was Crying'
  • 'I Was Crying'

    Governor Gregoire signs a suicide prevention law. Plus, Spokane’s budget forecast.
      Governor Gregoire signs a suicide prevention law. Plus, Spokane’s budget forecast.
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  • A New Challenger
  • A New Challenger

    Nancy McLaughlin eyes the state Senate. Plus, students grounded at SFCC.
      “I’ve been thinking for quite some time knowing that there’s term limits with City Council,” says McLaughlin, whose two terms on the council will end next year. “I’ve loved my time on City Council. [I] wonder if I can take my experience to a higher level, if I can take my experience to the 3rd District.
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  • Much Ado About Linens
  • Much Ado About Linens

    Unions and the state square off over the unglamorous task of doing laundry
      The Washington state Department of Social and Health Services squares off with the Service Employees International Union over the unglamorous task of doing laundry.
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  • Trouble Holding Liquor
  • Trouble Holding Liquor

    Sorting out Washington's new booze law. Plus, a new judge, and an uninvited sheriff.
      Sorting out Washington's new booze law. Plus, a new judge, and an uninvited sheriff.
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  • Big-Screen Beer
  • Big-Screen Beer

    A bill in Olympia could allow you to drink at the Garland. If the theater can afford it.
      There’s nothing finer than watching a second-run movie for a fistful of dollars while drinking a cold beer.Thanks to some legislation slowly making its way through Olympia, this may soon be poss
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  • Come and Get It
  • Come and Get It

    There is $32 million of unclaimed property in Spokane County. Is any of it yours?
      The state of Washington is holding dentist Mike Condon’s money. Nothing you could buy a yacht with — between $50 and $100. Maybe it got lost in the mail. Maybe it got sent to a doctor in t
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  • Seventh in the Nation
  • Seventh in the Nation

    Washington's big gay week. Plus, revolution and a challenge.
      The conference’s opening reception is this Friday, Feb. 17, from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Spokane. It will feature spoken word and music, along with a screening of the short film “Maria Full of Hope,� and it’s free to the public.
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  • What the Frack?!
  • What the Frack?!

    Marriage equality, a social backlash, a sporty lawsuit, gas and justice gets a new leader.
  • Unchartered Territory
  • Unchartered Territory

    Washington state has repeatedly rejected charter schools, but one group of legislators hasn't given up.
      Idaho has 43 such charter schools âeuro;” publicly funded, offering free tuition, but not controlled by the school district. Just across the border in Washington, however, charter schools are banned. But in the 60 days of the new legislative session in Olympia, one group of bipartisan legislators wants to change that.
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  • Engaged to be Married
  • Engaged to be Married

    Washington mulls gay marriage. Plus, Idaho goes back to the drawing board.
      Bills allowing same-sex couples to marry received their first hearing before committees in the Washington State House and Senate on Monday. That same day, Senate Democrats announced that they expect to have the 25 votes needed for the measure to pass..
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  • Traffic Jam
  • Traffic Jam

    The Washington Legislature ups the fight against human trafficking.
      That was last year, and only after the Washington Legislature amended the stateâeuro;™s human trafficking statute to provide for harsher penalties. But convictions under the stateâeuro;™s human trafficking law âeuro;” one of the nationâeuro;™s first and harshest âeuro;” are rare..
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  • Supervision Showdown
  • Supervision Showdown

    One solution to the dwindling budget: letting offenders out of jail earlier, watching them less.
      In Washington, the budget has gotten so tight that the Legislature is considering letting people out of jail early to cut costs. Struggling with limited funding, the Department of Corrections is counting on two bills before the House Ways and Means Committee to overhaul the way it deals with offenders.
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  • Gerrymandered?
  • Gerrymandered?

    Democrats say a rising star was taken out by GOP mapmaking.
      But as a longtime Democratic Party functionary, he has worked behind the scenes as a policy advisor and campaign manager for people whose names you would recognize: U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, former state Sen. Chris Marr, congressional candidate Don Barbieri.
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  • Levies Break
  • Levies Break

    Funds that help keep poor school districts afloat are in danger
      But, for all the community support, they arenâeuro;™t a rich district âeuro;” not like Bellevue or Seattle. Most of Deer Parkâeuro;™s students are poor enough to qualify for free or reduced lunch. But itâeuro;™s low-income districts like Deer Park âeuro;” not Bellevue or Seattle âeuro;” that may lose a crucial funding stream.
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  • Gloom and Doom
  • Gloom and Doom

    Washington's governor on the $2 billion hole, a new sales tax and that one guy ... what's his name? The new mayor of Spokane?
      Legislators already cut $4.5 billion from the stateâeuro;™s books earlier this year. Now the governor has called them back to cut another $2 billion. Sheâeuro;™s proposed cuts of $652 million from human services, $97 million from education and $30 million from corrections, among others.
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