Police progress update
Mayor Mike McGinn is proclaiming that the city has made progress on improving police practices around the use of force and community relations. He said today that the city is about halfway through the tasks he set in his 20-month reform plan, launched just over 10 months back. With the mayor's race looming, there's surely a political element in his announcement. But the city has a site for tracking the progress in each area and judging for yourself: Click here for the progress reporting and here for the overall plan.
Your elected marriage counselors
Conservative Republican Sen. Don Benton and seven other senators want to make it tougher for couples to divorce. Their bill, which Q13 notes is called the Family Second Chance Act, would require couples to wait a year (rather than the current 90 days) before divorcing. And both spouses would have to swear that they had read a state-approved handbook on preserving their marriage. In the spirit of the day, we will encourage the preserve-marriage senators to get out this evening and toast some of the same-sex couples celebrating their first Valentine's Day of the marriage equality era.
*Bipartisan* DREAM Act support
Yakima-area Republican state Reps. Bruce Chandler and Charles Ross have stepped up to support the state DREAM Act. The act, as Publicola reports, makes the children of undocumented immigrants eligible for in-state tuition at public colleges. Chandler could be particularly significant in inspiring some courage by other Republicans and moderate Democrats: The Granger resident has served since 1999 and was the Republicans' House minority leader at one time.
Woodland Park Zoo will put its four lion clubs on display for the first time this Saturday. As Seattlepi.com's Vanessa Ho reports, "In the last few weeks, the 3-month-old, still unnamed cubs took their first steps in the lions' outside pen, in which they rolled in grass and chewed on sticks." The viewing hours will generally be from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., but should expand as the cubs grow.
Reardon's in hot water ... again
Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon's office is once again at the center of political weirdness: The county council is considering an uprecedented investigation into what appears to be an elaborate effort on the part of Reardon's office to harass and gain public records on the exec's political opponents.
The Herald put together a seven-minute video to explain the labyrinth of documents, dubious names and record requests involved. Two of Reardon's fellow Democrats -— County Council members Dave Somers and Brian Sullivan — along with their aides, have been particular targets of the record requests. Longtime Republican Councilmember John Koster (one of the most decent if utterly conservative pols you'll ever find) tells The Herald that answers are needed: "The voters expect better of us."
Reardon was cleared last year of any financial wrongdoing in connection with an extramarital affair. The county was once a model of good governance under Bob Drewel, who was executive for 12 years through 2003. Then came Reardon.
Shocker alert: 'Die Hard' scores a positive review
Bruce Willis' latest Die Hard movie, "A Good Day to Die Hard," is out and it already has at least one positive review: Megan Seling of The Stranger. Here's betting her review is much more entertaining than the movie.
Orcas Island flash mob
OK, we get that you might be skeptical just reading the headline. And this starts a tad slowly. But Orcas Island earns some cred by the time this is over.
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