Regional News

Courtesy of Tyler LeMasters

This week we’re profiling candidates for Spokane City Council’s South City Council District. There are two. We’re introducing, Tyler LeMasters.

Steve Jackson/SPR

Researchers are looking into all kinds of quality-of-life issues for people as they age. And now that kind of work is extending into the canine realm.

Washington State University researchers are looking into about how your dog can live a better life.

The Dog Aging Project is a joint effort by WSU and several other higher education institutions.

WSU Researcher Dr. Lynne Nelson says the project is investigating questions about genetics, canine cognition, cardiology and age-related mobility.

Courtesy of Betsy Wilkerson

This week we’re profiling candidates for Spokane City Council’s South City Council District. Today, we’re introducing incumbent for District 2, Betsy Wilkerson.

SPR City Council Interviews: Betsy Wilkerson

Apr 19, 2021
Courtesy of Betsy Wilkerson

Spokane Public Radio reporter Rebecca White has been sitting down with candidates for Spokane City Council.

This week we're talking to candidates for District 2, which includes the South Hill, East Central and downtown Spokane. Rebecca White discussed homelessness, policing, affordable housing and the environment with candidate Betsy Wilkerson, who is running to retain her seat.

SPR City Council Interviews: Mike Lish

Apr 16, 2021
Courtesy of Mike Lish

This week Spokane Public Radio is interviewing every city council candidate from the city's Northwest district.

City Council District 3 Candidate Mike Lish and reporter Rebecca White discuss economic recovery, homelessness, affordable housing, public safety and environmental policy.

Courtesy of Mike Lish

This week, we’re interviewing people who have announced their candidacy for Spokane city council. We're focusing on the five candidates in the Northwest district.

Mike Lish is the owner of D’Lish’s hamburgers, a company his parents founded in the 1990s.

Courtesy of Lucrecia Hill

This week, we’re interviewing people who have announced their candidacy for Spokane city council. We're focusing this week on the five candidates in the Northwest district. Today, Rebecca White introduces us to Lacrecia “Lu” Hill.

SPR City Council Interviews: Lacrecia "Lu" Hill

Apr 15, 2021
Courtesy of Lucrecia Hill

This week Spokane Public Radio is interviewing every city council candidate from the city's Northwest district.

City Council District 3 Candidate Lacrecia "Lu" Hill and reporter Rebecca White discuss economic recovery, homelessness, affordable housing, public safety and environmental policy.

Restaurant host Christopher Savage is one of five candidates vying for an open city council seat in northwest Spokane.

SPR City Council Interviews: Christopher Savage

Apr 14, 2021
Courtesy of Christopher Savage

This week Spokane Public Radio is interviewing every city council candidate from the city's Northwest district.

City Council District 3 Candidate Christopher Savage and reporter Rebecca White discuss economic recovery, homelessness, affordable housing, public safety and environmental policy.

SPR City Council Interviews: Karen Kearney

Apr 13, 2021
Courtesy of Karen Kearney

This week Spokane Public Radio is talking with every city council candidate from the city's Northwest district.

City Council District 3 Candidate Kearney and reporter Rebecca White discuss economic recovery, homelessness, affordable housing, public safety and the environment.

Courtesy of Karen Kearney

This week, we begin a series of profiles with people who have announced their candidacy for Spokane city council. We'll focus this week on the five candidates in the Northwest district, starting today with Karen Kearney.

Washington State Department of Health

Several government and private providers in the Northwest have paused use of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine effective immediately after six women who had received the vaccine developed blood clots.

According to a Washington state Department of Health news release, the vaccine will be on hold until the state receives recommendations from the FDA and CDC.

SPR City Council Interviews: Zack Zappone

Apr 12, 2021
Courtesy of Zack Zappone

This week Spokane Public Radio is talking with every city council candidate from the city's Northwest district.

City Council District 3 Candidate Zack Zappone and reporter Rebecca White discuss economic recovery, homelessness, affordable housing, public safety and the environment. Interviews with his opponents, Lucrecia "Lu" Hill, Mike Lish, Christopher Savage and Karen Kearney will be posted over the course of this week.

Spokane County Hires New Medical Examiner

Apr 12, 2021
Courtesy of Spokane County

Spokane County has hired Dr. Veena Singh as the new Chief Medical Examiner.

The medical examiner’s office does autopsies and forensic investigations into the causes of people’s death in Spokane and the surrounding counties.

Dr. Singh most recently served as a medical examiner for Anoka County, Minnesota and previously has worked in New Mexico and Arizona.

She is also Board Certified in Forensic, Anatomic and Clinical Pathology and is originally from Portland.

Washington State Governor's Office

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Monday that Whitman, Cowlitz, and Pierce counties have failed to meet the state’s re-opening metrics and will face more restrictions.

Those counties will go from Phase 3 of the governor’s re-opening plan to Phase 2, which means businesses must operate at reduced capacity and both indoor, and outdoor gatherings must be smaller.

Rebecca White/SPR

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Friday that counties now must fail in two metrics to be moved back a phase in their reopening – and some counties may have if the guidance had stayed the same.

Rebecca White/SPR

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Friday that counties now must fail in two metrics to be moved back a phase in their reopening. The governor says the state won't act unless counties have both a high hospitalization and case rate.

Previously, a county could be forced to regress to more restrictions if they had more than 200 cases per 100,000 people. Now they also must have more than five hospitalizations per 100,000 cases for the state to regress a county to a more restrictive phase.

Spokane Launches 2021 Construction Season

Apr 8, 2021
Rebecca White/SPR

The city of Spokane will soon break ground on several new construction projects, including a massive overhaul of East Sprague and a partial demolition of the Post Street Bridge.

During a news conference Thursday, Mayor Nadine Woodward said the new projects would provide jobs in a time of economic challenges, and benefits for both motorists as well as cyclists.

Doug Nadvornick/SPR

After a devastating January windstorm knocked down hundreds of trees in the city, the Spokane Park system plans to replant them – two trees for every one that fell.

Rebecca White/SPR

Health officials are concerned about rising COVID-19 cases, especially in younger people, that could put the county of compliance with the governor’s re-opening metrics.

To stay in Phase 3 of the governor’s re-opening plan, Spokane County must have less than 200 cases per 100,000 people. As of Wednesday, the county had 183 cases per 100,000. Spokane County Interim Health Officer Dr. Francisco Velázquez said that was concerning.

Flickr Commons

Every Sheriff’s Deputy in Spokane County will soon have a body worn camera, a purchase law enforcement and public officials say will make policing more transparent.

On Tuesday Spokane Valley City Council unanimously voted to divide the cost of purchasing body worn cameras with the county. That vote means the Sheriff’s Office has the funds to equip every deputy with a camera by the end of this year.

“This is a tool that will serve as good insurance for our office, to be able to protect them and highlight the good work that they’re doing.”

Courtesy Spokane County

A bill that would force Spokane County to negotiate with the city of Spokane on how emergency communications are funded has now passed both chambers of the Washington legislature.

The bill follows a longstanding conflict between Spokane County and the City of Spokane over which government oversees the region’s 9-1-1 dispatch response.

That system is funded through a 2017 sales tax which created an entity called the Spokane Regional Emergency Communications. That group was meant to consolidate all 9-1-1 dispatchers under one agency.

Courtesy of CHAS Health

CHAS Health is opening up a new mass vaccination clinic for anyone eligible to get a vaccine Wednesday at the Spokane Community College Campus.

Vaccinations are only available to those who qualify under the current state guidelines, which is people over the age of 60, people over 16 with some medical conditions. People who work in some fields such as agriculture or healthcare are also eligible now. Starting April 15, anyone over 16 will be able to get a vaccine there.

Courtesy of City of Airway Heights

Nearly four years ago, the city of Airway Heights discovered its water was contaminated by firefighting chemicals used at nearby Fairchild Air Force Base. Now, the city is asking the state of Washington to pitch in for a new source of clean drinking water.

Courtesy of CHAS Health

A small percentage of people who’ve been vaccinated in Washington and Idaho have become infected with COVID-19. Health officials say that’s not a sign the vaccine doesn’t work, or that people should cast aside public health guidelines.

Rebecca White/SPR

Spokane County Treasurer Michael Baumgartner is offering a possible solution to financing for preserving some desirable property in south Spokane.

The future of the 48-acre Pilcher property, located between Latah Creek and the bottom of High Drive Bluff Park, has been up in the air for a couple years.

 

Spokane County Sheriff Deputies To Equip Body Cameras

Mar 29, 2021
Flikr Commons

Every sheriff’s deputy in Spokane County could soon be equipped with body cameras by the end of this year.

The Spokane Police Department has had body cameras for years, along with Lincoln County, which borders Spokane County. Leaders in Spokane County had previously hesitated when asked to purchase them, over concerns about how much it could cost the county to respond to public records requests.

Idaho Corrections

The man convicted of killing a Kootenai County family and a child in California has died while awaiting execution.

The Prosecutors Office in Riverside County, California confirmed Joseph E. Duncan died on Sunday. Duncan had been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and according to court documents filed in January, he had less than six months to live. He was sentenced to death in 2005.

Courtesy of the TSA

As travel picks up for spring break, the Transportation Security Administration, TSA, has added new technology at Spokane International Airport to reduce contact between agents and travelers.

TSA spokeswoman Lorie Dankers said the new technology would make going through security more efficient, and reduce risk for both parties.

“There’s no contact between traveler and TSA officer, and we know that fewer touchpoints is safer and healthier for the traveler, and safer and healthier for our employees,” she said.

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