Politics

Melissa Santos
Oct 3, 2022 - News

Washington will have highest state minimum wage in 2023

Illustration of an escalator with steps made out of 5 and 10 dollar bills.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Washington's minimum wage is poised to be the highest of any state in the country next year.

Driving the news: The state Department of Labor and Industries announced Friday that the minimum wage will increase by $1.25 in January 2023, to $15.74 an hour.

Melissa Santos
Sep 29, 2022 - News

Seattle area's high inflation rate will be an election issue

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Inflation in the Seattle area has been higher than the U.S. average — and the issue could play a big role in the upcoming election.

Driving the news: Newly released data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that consumer prices rose 9% in the Seattle area year-over-year, outpacing the national increase of 8.3%.

Melissa Santos
Sep 28, 2022 - Politics

New police oversight agency unable to investigate killing by Olympia officer

A memorial to Timothy Green, set up at the spot where he was shot by Olympia police. Photo: Melissa Santos/Axios

Millie Green says that if a new state office to investigate police was up and running, an Olympia officer would have thought twice before killing her son last month.

Driving the news: Timothy Green died on Aug. 22, after an Olympia police officer shot him next to a Starbucks drive-thru.

Melissa Santos
Sep 27, 2022 - Politics

King County officials float $1.25B behavioral health ballot measure

Illustration of a piggy bank-like brain with a dollar going inside
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

King County officials want to build five new walk-in centers where people experiencing mental health crises could get immediate help — a service that is unavailable locally right now.

Driving the news: The walk-in crisis centers are part of a proposed $1.25 billion ballot measure announced Monday by King County Executive Dow Constantine and other local leaders.

Melissa Santos
Sep 26, 2022 - News

Why Seattle's cannabis equity plans have limited reach

Illustration of a marijuana leaf decal on a ticket dispenser.
Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

Newly passed laws in Seattle aim to help people of color break into the state's mostly white legal cannabis industry.

  • But the legislation can only do so much without the creation of more pot business licenses at the state level.
Melissa Santos
Sep 23, 2022 - Politics

Homicides in Seattle rise — unlike in other major cities

Police look over the scene of a deadly shooting at Seattle's 3rd Avenue and Pine Street on January 22, 2020
Police look over the scene of a deadly shooting at Seattle's 3rd Avenue and Pine Street on Jan. 22, 2020. Photo: Karen Ducey/Getty Images

The number of homicides in Seattle rose slightly in the first half of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021, city figures show.

Why it matters: Seattle appears to be bucking a national trend.

Melissa Santos
Sep 20, 2022 - News

Seattle mayor appoints Adrian Diaz as new police chief

A police leader in a short-sleeved uniform shirt speaks at a podium.
Adrian Diaz speaks at a press conference in August 2020. Photo: Karen Ducey/Getty Images

Seattle has gone two years without a permanent police chief, but it's about to have a new top cop.

Driving the news: Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell announced Tuesday that he is appointing Adrian Diaz to become the city's permanent chief of police.

Melissa Santos
Sep 16, 2022 - News

Leader of ballot box surveillance effort sues election officials

Ballot dropbox under surveillance
A digital template for the signs that Amber Krabach posted near King County dropboxes. From court documents

A Republican activist who posted printed signs this summer warning that King County ballot boxes were under surveillance is suing the public officials who said those signs were unacceptable.

Driving the news: Amber Krabach filed a lawsuit this month alleging that King County Elections Director Julie Wise trampled Krabach’s free speech rights by calling Krabach’s signs a form of voter intimidation and ordering them removed.

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