Banking on pot
State Sen. Bob Hasegawa has an idea that could make legal marijuana a more secure business operation: Creating a state bank that would be allowed to take deposits from pot retailers and middle men. Federal laws limit banks' ability to take deposits that come from any sort of drug trade, although there are efforts in Congress to change the rules. But Washington State Wire's Erik Smith reminds us that action in Congress is hard to predict. Hasegawa, a Seattle Democrat, is pushing for a state bank modeled on one in North Dakota that has helped assure available credit there for generations.
Speaking of pot, The Stranger reports that Seattle Police will distribute information about the legalization law attached to bags of Dorito's during this weekend's Seattle Hempfest. Perhaps next year Washington's new state bank will be able to use a similar tactic to sign folks up for checking accounts.
Employment in Washington state rose again in July, the 10th month in a row of job creation. State officials said employers added 8,800 jobs, better than the 6,000 per month averaged during the streak. The state's unemployment rate rose slightly to 6.9 percent, compared to May and June's 6.8 percent. But the Puget Sound Business Journal notes that the rate a year ago was a whopping 8.3 percent and the Journal estimates that the state has now recovered 83 percent of the jobs lost during the 2008 recession.
Japan's ANA airline today said it had to replace wiring in three Boeing 787 Dreamliners after discovering a problem in a plane about to depart from Tokyo. The wiring defects would have caused the wrong fire extinguisher system to go off in one of the plane's two engines, according to a report carried in The Herald. A financial analyst told Bloomberg News that the problem sounded routine for a new line of planes. A Boeing spokesman said a thorough check will occur.
When a woman dreams of her wedding day, it's safe to say that it never starts the way one Kent woman's did last weekend. The Tacoma News Tribune's Larry LaRue reported that Sunday morning, the woman's wedding dress was stolen out of her car while she was preparing for her ceremony, which was scheduled for later that night. In a panic, she called 911. The Valley Communications 911 dispatcher, identified only as Candice, answered the call, reported the theft and passed the information to police officers. Then she offered to lend the woman her own wedding dress. Candice, who had gotten married 18 months before, sent a picture of the dress to the bride-to-be and got her husband to retrieve it from her parents' house in Gig Harbor before delivering it to the fiancee's house in Kent. And the dress fit, just like in every girl's dream.
UW ranking doesn't rankle
The University of Washington ranked 27th best on a list of the world’s 100 best regarded universities compiled by Reuters and The Times (of London’s) Higher Education. As Joel Connelly of seattlepi.com points out, a moment of happiness for a school that lacks both significant support from Washington state and goes unappreciated for its important role as the city’s largest employer.
Of course, these kinds of lists are proliferating like scotch broom along state highways, and there’s a special twist on this one. The sponsors say it’s a “spin-off” from their best universities list and that it actually ranks the reputation of each university. They call it “the definitive list of the top 100 most powerful global university brands.” The U actual ranks a little higher (at 24) on the actual best universities list. Next: Stay tuned for Crosscut’s First Annual Ranking of Academic Rankings, which we will inaugurate as soon as we can check that The Onion hasn’t beaten us to the punch.
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