Derailment but no oil leak
A train hauling oil tanker cars and other freight derailed under the Magnolia Bay early this morning, but no oil leaked. The three cars, all newer models with a number of safety features, carried petroleum from North Dakota’s Bakken oil fields. Crosscut’s Bill Lucia has a full report here. The timing wasn’t ideal for the BNSF railroad and advocates of increased energy exports: A Seattle hearing will take public comments tonight on the operation of the Northwest’s largest oil terminal, operated by BP north of Bellingham. — J.C.
Zillow: A big acquisition?
As early as next week, Seattle-based real estate site Zillow may acquire its biggest competitor, Trulia. According to the Puget Sound Business Journal, the deal could be worth $2 billion. Since these speculations have made their way online, the stock prices of both companies have soared. All the sweeter if it goes through: Trulia is based in San Francisco. — K.H.
Boeing cuts: Is age a factor?
The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace on Wednesday filed charges of age discrimination with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the state Human Rights Commission. Boeing called the charges “a baseless complaint” and told The Seattle Times that it “does not discriminate against its employees on any basis.”
Ray Goforth, executive director of the union, today told Crosscut that Boeing’s new way of ranking employees for layoffs means that workers in their 40s are twice as likely to lose their jobs as they would have been under a previous system. Employees in their 50s have triple the chance of getting fired as before, and those in their 60s have quadruple the risk, according to Goforth. SPEEA has also filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the National Board of Labor Relations over what it says is a lack of detailed information from the company on the new system. — M.L.
Oso study planned
Gov. Jay Inslee and Snohomish County Executive John Lovick will announce the launch of the State Route 530 Landslide Commission on Friday. It will study the Oso landslide that killed 43 people in order to improve planning and emergency responses in the future. More details are expected at the announcement. – J.S.
Everyday superheroes, in plastic
Is it a bird? A plane? Nope — it’s you, because You Kick Ass! A Seattle company of that name is serving up personalized superhero action figures. With one photo, You Kick Ass can create an action figure that looks just like you, a coworker (the boss!) or a loved one (decked out in a cape and spandex). According to a GeekWire report, the company hopes to deliver the first batch of action figures by the end of September, each packaged in a box decorated with a personalized comic. The company is getting into business with the help of two full-color 3D printers and a successful KickStarter campaign, which has raised $46,603 as of this afternoon. – E.W.
Lobbying for the governor
Miguel Perez-Gibson, a longtime lobbyist and legislative policy analyst, has been named as Gov. Jay Inslee's director of legislative affairs. Ted Sturdevant recently stepped down to pursue other interests. Perez-Gibson will assume his new post on Aug. 4.
In the past, Perez-Gibson had been a deputy supervisor at the Washington Department of Natural Resources for three years before working four years as a senior policy analyst for the House Democratic caucus. He owns his own firm, which lobbies and provides other consultations for environmental groups, tribes and social justice organizations. He earlier held positions with the state House of Representatives Democratic caucus and state Department of Natural Resources. He also plays several instruments for the longtime Olympia-based band Los Calaveras. – J.S.
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