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Saturday, August 06, 2005

Because the ERG Wasn't Complex Enough 

Some state scientists are traveling to New York to see how a chemical released to the subway and other crowded places would act. And then hopefully figure out computer models. It'll be a good tool in case of a terror attack or accident. It's neat, but really I took a HazMat awareness class, and basically all I remember is if you can see it you're too close and P stands for Polymerization.



Letters To The Editor Week 

I'm thinking of having another one in a few weeks, does anybody know of a good page to contact local papers now that the Cooper campaign is no more? Campaign Underground has something, but it's a bit clunky. So is there something better?



Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board Decision 

For those in Pierce County, you might be interested. Here are the biggest three things:

• The county’s “agricultural resource lands” zone, which protects 31,000 acres of farmland from intensive development in unincorporated areas, including the Puyallup and Orting valleys, will stand. As a result, the developer of The Buttes, a subdivision near Orting, lost its bid to exclude some land from the zone. Conversely, Futurewise, formerly known as 1000 Friends of Washington, lost its argument to put more land under the zone.

• The county does not have to shrink its urban growth area – drawn to corral new houses, offices and stores over the next 20 years – despite having excess capacity for those houses, offices and stores. However, cities must abide by a new county rule requiring them to show that a countywide shortage of buildable land exists before they can add more land to their individual urban growth areas.

Futurewise wanted to force the county to pull back its urban growth area. The cities of Bonney Lake, Orting and Roy fought to overturn the rule limiting their growth boundaries.

• The county’s “rural separator,” a 17-square-mile area between Tacoma and Puyallup, will continue to allow no more than one house per 5 acres, or two houses per 5 acres if half the land is set aside as open space. County resident Jerome Taylor lost his appeal to subdivide.



Friday, August 05, 2005

Searching the West House 

The FBI searched Jim West's house a week and a half ago. They convinced a judge that there was probable cause that he "knowingly and willingly engaged in a scheme to entice others to engage in sexual activity with him through offers and grants of city of Spokane jobs, internships or appointments."



Mayoral Computer Seized 

It seems that our favorite municipal pervert, Jim "Come Here, Young Man" West misplaced his home computer and files during an FBI raid.
The [Federal] warrant says there is sufficient evidence to believe that West “knowingly and willingly engaged in a scheme to entice others to engage in sexual activity with him through offers and grants of city of Spokane jobs, internships or appointments.
Thanks to John Avarosis at Americablog.



Sell Sell Sell 

Bill Gates sells about 4% of his Microsoft shares, and nets about %100 million. Not a bad day's worth of work if you can get it.



We're 3 Points Smarter 

Washington State is now the 30th Smartest State, up three points since last year's list. Oregon is also up at 35th (from 32nd) and Alaska went from 23rd to 45th (it depends on which bear you talk to).



Viva King County Airport 

Or not. Another couple hurdles in SouthWest's decision to relocate.

In a letter to Sims dated July 29, both U.S. senators and five House members from Washington said Southwest Airlines' proposal to transfer its flights to Boeing Field from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport would "potentially waste taxpayer dollars."

The delegation argued Southwest's presence at Boeing Field would "undoubtedly require significant road improvements," they wrote.

Since federal laws prohibit money generated by Boeing Field to be used for general-access roads, King County would need an infusion of public money "when the city, county and state are desperately searching for funding solutions for critical regional projects."[...]

In a separate missive, the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce yesterday wrote the plan "is not in the best interests of King County taxpayers... ."


...Added link



901 

It's official, it'll be on the ballot.



Thursday, August 04, 2005

Shawnna Hughes 

The state is still retarded.



DSHS 

The new secretary of DSHS has announced a couple changes. The major one is a restructuring.

The new structure brings experts in mental health and substance abuse into the same agency as the Medicaid program, which often pays for services in both fields.

"They have many of the same clients. We know if we can get people the mental health treatments they need in a timely manner and get people the substance abuse treatment they need, first of all they'll be healthier, and second, they will save taxpayer money," said department spokesman Dave Workman.

The change is primarily schematic, Workman said.

"We haven't calculated the amount of dollars that we will save with this realignment. It's just a good use of resources. We know that we will have one fewer administration."

In taking on the divisions of mental health and substance abuse as well as Medicaid, assistant secretary Doug Porter now oversees most of the department's budget.

"In terms of staff numbers, yes, we have increased it greatly with the mental health part of it. But in terms of budget, he was already $6 billion of the $8 billion budget," Arnold-Williams said. "He's done a great job and is willing to take on new challenges."



It Takes Its Toll 

The technology is a lot better. And Darryl at Hominid Views has some thoughts on them as a possible solution for our road problems.



Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Open Thread 

My EMT test is tonight so wish me luck or use this as an open thread. Anyway, I should be back to full strength tomorrow.



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