Suit over Eastside Catholic firing
Attorneys for former Eastside Catholic vice principal Mark Zmuda will file suit Friday against the school and the archdiocese, which forced him out after he married his longtime, same-sex partner. The Seattle Times reports Zmuda will talk with reporters about his suit during a press conference Friday. His departure sparked a series of protests led by Eastside students but pulling in other Catholic school stdeunts as well. — J.C.
The principal of Issaquah High School told KIRO Radio today that the school has disciplined students over racist messages they sent on social media accounts attacking black basketball players at Garfield High School. Principal Andrea McCormick told KIRO that "we're disappointed" in the students' activity. Garfield's Black Student Union wasn't impressed, saying the group hadn't found Issaquah very responsive. And a Seattle Police spokeswoman said the messages were being examined for possible criminal violations of malicious harassment laws. OK, Issaquah, beyond unspecified discipline, what's being done to create something positive out of such outrageous behavior? — J.C.
Ridesharing data: Better late than never?
The uberX ridesharing service said Thursday that it often has more than 300 drivers on the streets at a time, more than twice the proposed 150 limit Seattle City Council is considering. All told, GeekWire reports, the company has about 900 people driving in Seattle. The company also released details of its insurance coverage as part of what GeekWire describes as a last-minute effort to head off the new regulations that appear to have slim majority support on the council. — J.C.
Pike Place remake
At once a symbol of Seattle past and a model for adaptation, Pike Place Market has managed to remake itself again and again. On Thursday, the Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority announced design plans for a $65 million renovation. These plans promise to increase parking, add retail and restaurant space, and expand low-income housing and social services.
Of course, the plan relies on the removal of the Alaskan Way Viaduct, with the aim of connecting the market to the new waterfront and aquarium. The plan calls for “ground to be broken within the next year” – with completion at the end of 2016. Funding will be a combined effort between the Pike Place Development Authority, the Washington Department of Transportation, theCity of Seattle and low-income housing grants. There's also a $9 million capital campaign underway (details here). — K.H.
Today in Olympia
- Efforts are underway to revive a bill that would provide money for low-income housing rentals. Sen. Jan Angel, R-Gig Harbor, abruptly killed a bill by Rep. David Sawyer, D-Tacoma, that would have maintained the current $40 fee on home sales that funds those programs — a move even Republicans protested. The ultra-conservative Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, led the GOP outcry, joining a bipartisan press conference Thursday to call for the bill's revival. — J.S.
The Senate Majority Coalition Caucus has been slowwalking a transportation revenue package — allegedly on the grounds that Gov. Jay Inslee might sneak a requirement in that would set a carbon limit for gas in Washington. Thursday, Inslee, who has said any such move would still be months away, finally got a little fed up with the accusation. "I think everyone needs to take a deep breath and not get their knickers into a twist on this," he told reporters. At least he didn't say the word "thongs." — J.S.
Mark Miloscia reinventing himself
Former Democratic state Rep. Mark Miloscia is trying to make a political comeback — as a Republican. He wants to move up in fact, seeking election as a state senator against incumbent Democrat Tracey Eide in the 30th District (Federal Way, Algona and parts of Pacific) in this year's election.
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