Voters will be asked in November to take a look around them and decide if they want to improve their natural environment: parks, greenspaces, water, fish and wildlife.
Ballot Measure 26-80, known as the 2006 Natural Areas Bond Measure, would issue $227.4 million in general obligation bonds. Those bonds would preserve targeted natural areas in the region; protect and restore watersheds for improved water quality; protect streams, fish and wildlife; and increase the presence of nature in neighborhoods.
The estimated cost of the bonds is $19 cents per $1,000 of assessed value; the average homeowner would pay about $2.50 to $2.92 per month or $30 to $35 a year.
Among the measure's goals, supporters say, is to bring parks and greenspaces closer to those who don't have easy access to existing parks.
Although some residents may say the Portland metro area appears to have a lot of parks and natural areas — and the city does rank fairly well with other cities of its size nationally
Ulanda Watkins' already-unlikely journey may be poised for its most momentous turn. The Portland attorney is running for the Multnomah County Circuit Court seat vacated by the passing of Judge Clifford Freeman.
To say that the Northeast Portland native has faced obstacles in her life would be an understatement. Watkins was raised from birth to age 9 by her grandmother when her parents, teenagers at the time, were too poor to do raise her. Despite financial hardship, Watkins credits her "Grandma Ruth" with instilling the work ethic that has carried her to where she is today, a partner in the downtown firm of Walker, Warren and Watkins at the ripe old age of 36.
In response to criticism of the Portland Development Commission voiced by African Americans and other minorities recently, the commission will make "significant" changes, said Bruce Warner, the commission's executive director.
Warner will create a new executive-level position to address community relations and business equity; that person — who is expected to be hired within the next three months — will report directly to Warner.
Maple Elementary School is among the first Blue Ribbon Schools selected in the 2006 No Child Left Behind — Blue Ribbon Schools Program.
The Seattle school received a certificate last week from U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings and Deputy Assistant Secretary Cindi Williams.
The 250 public and private K-12 schools are being honored for helping close the achievement gap and for students who achieve at very high levels. A second group of schools will be announced in October when more data on achievements is available.
"These schools show what wonderful accomplishments can be made when we focus on the bottom line in education — student achievement," Spellings said. "All these schools have students from all subgroups who've made impressive test gains or who scored in the top tier on state tests. They are outstanding examples of how all students can achieve to higher standards."
A Sudanese man living in Washington state has been reunited with his three younger siblings after five years of struggle with the U.S. government to get them out of his war-torn homeland.
Ater Malath, 30, sought help from local relief agencies and approached almost every congressional office in the area in his quest to bring his brother and two sisters to America.
Assisted by the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, Malath last week was reunited with his younger siblings, Mary, 21; Peter, 19; and Martha, 17.
VATICAN CITY—Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, the Zambian prelate who angered the Vatican by getting married in 2001, has been excommunicated for again defying the Holy See by installing four married men as bishops, the Vatican said Tuesday. The Vatican said Milingo, 76, was "automatically excommunicated" under church law for the ordination of the men at a church in Washington on Sunday. The Archdiocese of Washington said Sunday that the installations, which took place at the Imani Temple, were not valid.
Milingo is in a condition of "progressive, open break with communion with the Church," the Vatican said in a statement.
The Seattle Seahawks rolled all over the New York Giants Sunday at Qwest Field and are off to a 3-0 start this season. Next week the team faces the undefeated Chicago Bears, who have the league's No.6-rated offense and a big, No.4-ranked defense. In front of the largest crowd ever at Qwest Field — 68, 161 — the Seahawks unleashed an air assault en route to their 42-30 win over the Giants. League MVP Shaun Alexander finished with a club-record 102nd touchdown of his career. But there was a down side — Alexander will not play this Sunday and will be out an unknown number of weeks. After Sunday's game, it was confirmed that he had cracked a bone in his foot.
The African American Reach and Teach Health Ministry, Freedom Church of Seattle, local churches and health providers will sponsor a day of health and wellness activities as part of the federal Department of Heath and Human Service's "Take a Loved One for a Checkup Day" campaign.
The Seattle Public Library invites preschoolers, parents and caregivers to special story times in October at local libraries around the Seattle area to highlight Fire Prevention Month. Firefighters from the Seattle Fire Department will read books on fire safety and display firefighting equipment