01-29-2023  12:33 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Oregon BIPOC Caucus Calls for Action to Support Victims of Gun Violence

The Legislative Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) Caucus has released the following statement in response to the tragedy at Half Moon Bay, CA that left seven dead and one person wounded, all of whom were people of color

Democrats Voice Priorities for Coming Year in the Capitol

Highlights from the Democrats 2023 legislative agenda. 

Colorado Lawmakers Look to AI to Detect Wildfires Earlier

A historic drought and recent heat waves tied to climate change have made wildfires harder to fight in the American West and scientists say warming weather will continue to make fires more frequent and destructive.

Justices Weigh Effort to Balance Washington State's Tax Code

Washington is one of nine states without an income tax, and its heavy reliance on sales and fuel taxes to pay for schools, roads and other public expenses falls disproportionately on low-income residents.

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon Graduation Rate Rises With Gains Made In Every Student Group

Class of 2022 graduation rate is second highest In Oregon’s history ...

City Council Approves 13 to Independent District Commission

The commission will lead the effort to establish four new geographic districts for Portland’s next city council. ...

Incorporating Mindfulness Into Social Justice Classes Topic of Feb. 8 Oregon State Science Pub

The free event, which can be attended in person or viewed online, will feature a presentation by Kathryn McIntosh. She will discuss...

Exhibit "Flowers for Elders" Celebrates Living Portland Artists

Free, public, multimedia exhibit runs through Feb. 25 in SE Portland ...

The Skanner Foundation's 37th Annual MLK Breakfast to Air on TV

The sold-out event will air on 5 upcoming dates and times on Comcast Xfinity channels at the start of Black History Month. ...

Fully clothed bathing burglar found in Seattle bathroom

SEATTLE (AP) — A man suspected of breaking into a Seattle home has refused to come clean about his intentions, even though police found him fully clothed in a bathtub filled with water. A woman returned to her home Friday night to find a window smashed and an unknown man inside the...

Man accused in substation vandalism is released from custody

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — One of the two men charged with vandalizing electrical substations in Washington state over the holidays to cover a burglary was ordered released from federal custody Friday to seek substance abuse help. A federal judge issued the order for Matthew Greenwood,...

Krikke scores 30, leads Valparaiso over Evansville 81-69

VALPARAISO, Ind. (AP) — Ben Krikke scored 30 points to lead Valparaiso over Evansville 81-69 on Saturday. Krikke added nine rebounds for the Beacons (10-13, 4-8 Missouri Valley Conference). Kobe King added 13 points and Connor Barrett scored nine. Gage Bobe finished...

Russell leads SE Missouri State over Eastern Illinois 79-68

CHARLESTON, Ill. (AP) — Phillip Russell scored 19 points and Southeast Missouri State beat Eastern Illinois 79-68 on Saturday. Russell added six assists for the Redhawks (12-11, 7-3 Ohio Valley Conference). Adam Larson and Israel Barnes scored 11 points apiece. Larson blocked three...

OPINION

It's Time to Irrigate the Fallow Ground of Minority Media Ownership

In 2023, one aspect of civil rights and racial justice that barely remains addressed is racial inclusion in media ownership. ...

A Letter to Residents of N. and N.E. Portland from Commissioner Susheela Jayapal

Susheela Jayapal, Multnomah County Commissioner for District 2, North and Northeast Portland, reviews her first four-year term and looks forward to her second term ...

Are Black Individuals Like Kanye West, Van Jones, and Stephen A. Smith ‘Perpetrating a Fraud,’ or is Self-Hate a Primary Motivator for Anti-Blackness

“So, you have two types of Negro. The old type and the new type. Most of you know the old type. When you read about him in history during slavery he was called ‘Uncle Tom.’ He was the House Negro.”-Malcolm X ...

We Need Not Forgive

We need not forgive racial injustices in America’s past, and we must never forget them. But as a nation, we can reconcile. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

State of emergency declared over Atlanta 'Cop City' protest

ATLANTA (AP) — Gov. Brian Kemp declared a state of emergency Thursday, giving him the option of calling in the Georgia National Guard in response to a violent protest in downtown Atlanta over the killing by authorities of an environmental activist said to have shot a state trooper. ...

Jury rejects lawsuit filed by family of teen killed by cop

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A federal jury has found that a white Ohio police officer did not violate a Black teenager's civil rights when he shot and killed the boy while responding to a reported armed robbery. Jurors reached their verdict Wednesday in a lawsuit filed by Tyre King’s...

New US race, ethnicity standards proposed; first since '97

A Middle Eastern and North African category could be added to U.S. federal surveys and censuses, and changes could be made to how Hispanics are able to self-identify, under preliminary recommendations released Thursday by the Biden administration in what would be the first update to race and...

ENTERTAINMENT

Review: Joe Henry returns with varied 'kind-word blues' set

“All the Eye Can See,” Joe Henry (earMUSIC) “There goes the sun,” Joe Henry sings, sounding nothing like George Harrison as he contemplates our long, cold, lonely winter. “All the Eye Can See” is the most diverse album of Henry’s career, surrounding his...

Smokey Robinson, 'King of Motown,' to release new solo album

NEW YORK (AP) — It's been nearly a decade since Smokey Robinson's last album, but new music from the King of Motown is on the horizon. Robinson will release the nine-track album “Gasms” on April 28, the music legend behind hits like “My Girl” and “The Way You Do the Things...

Jesmyn Ward novel 'Let Us Descend' to be published Oct. 3

NEW YORK (AP) — The next novel by Jesmyn Ward, the two-time National Book Award winner, is the story of an enslaved teenage girl that the publisher is calling a blend of magical realism, historical narrative and Dante's “Inferno.” Scribner, an imprint of Simon & Schuster,...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Trump opens 2024 run, says he's 'more committed' than ever

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Former President Donald Trump kicked off his 2024 White House bid with stops Saturday in...

Pence: 'Mistakes were made' in classified records handling

MIAMI (AP) — Former Vice President Mike Pence said Friday that he takes “full responsibility” after...

Japan firm opens whale meat vending machines to push sales

YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — A Japanese whaling operator, after struggling for years to promote its products amid...

Brutality of Russia's Wagner gives it lead in Ukraine war

Fierce battles in eastern Ukraine have thrown a new spotlight on Russia's Wagner Group, a private military company...

Challenge for Tunisian democracy: Getting voters to show up

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia was once the Arab world’s hope for a new era of democracy. Now it’s in the...

Emhoff says somber Auschwitz visit key to antisemitism work

KRAKOW, Poland (AP) — Doug Emhoff, the husband of U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, said he was deeply moved by...

Tom Krisher and Dee-Ann Durbin AP Auto Writers

DETROIT (AP) -- U.S. sales of new cars and trucks rose in March, helped by a brighter jobs outlook and rising sales of fuel-efficient vehicles.

New vehicle sales rose 11 percent at General Motors, 16 percent at Ford, 23 percent at Honda and 27 percent at Nissan, all aided by sales of smaller, more efficient cars and crossovers, which look like truck-based SUVs but are more fuel efficient and nimble because they are built on car underpinnings.

Of major automakers, only Toyota Motor Corp. reported a decline, nearly 6 percent.

In March, the economy added 216,000 new jobs, bringing the unemployment rate to a two-year low of 8.8 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday. Companies added workers at the fastest two-month pace since before the recession began in late 2007.

Nearly all companies reported strong sales of small cars during the month, and large car sales generally were down.

But truck sales also were healthy in March for just about every manufacturer, a sign that businesses were buying as the economy continues to recover.

George Pipas, Ford Motor Co.'s top U.S. sales analyst, said small car sales shot up in the first part of March and then stabilized in the last three weeks as gas prices leveled off at around $3.50 per gallon. But Pipas said it's unclear if sales stabilized because of gas prices or if limited selection and availability of small cars dampened sales.

Ford had two months' worth of the Fiesta subcompact at the beginning of March, for example, but that fell to 40 days' supply at the end of the month as sales outpaced production. And the earthquake in Japan pinched supply of some small cars made there like the Toyota Prius and Honda Fit.

General Motors Co. said its overall sales increase was propelled by the new Chevrolet Cruze, its first high-quality small car in years. The vehicle posted an 80 percent sales gain over its lackluster predecessor, the Cobalt. The increase was by far the largest for any GM vehicle last month.

Ford models that saw the strongest sales increases included the Fiesta, whose sales jumped 56 percent from February, and the new Explorer crossover, Fusion sedan and Escape small SU.

Chrysler Group LLC said its 31 percent sales increase was led by midsize sedans such as the Chrysler 200, which was featured in a popular Super Bowl ad, and the Dodge Avenger. Sales growth for cars outpaced trucks, but truck sales still were strong at Chrysler.

Toyota attributed its sales drop to reduced rebates and limited availability of some models due to supply disruptions caused by Japan's earthquake.

Sales were expected to be down from last March, when Toyota offered big discounts to win back buyers after a series of safety recalls. TrueCar.com estimated Toyota's incentives were down 23 percent compared with last March.

J.D. Power and Associates predicted that nearly a quarter of vehicles sold to individual buyers were compact or subcompact cars. That is the highest amount since the Cash for Clunkers program encouraged people to choose more fuel-efficient models in the summer of 2009.

The national average for a gallon of gas hit $3.58 this week, the highest price ever for this time of year. Gas prices have jumped 25.1 cents per gallon in the past month.

GM's midsize crossovers also continued to be hot sellers in March. The Chevy Equinox rose 17 percent and GMC Terrain jumped 29 percent. Sales of the Chevrolet Silverado pickup, the company's most popular vehicle, rose 9 percent.

But the company ended two months of sweet deals and its overall sales growth lagged rivals. After raising discounts by about $400 per vehicle in January and extended them into February, GM then cut them in March.

"The hefty - and costly - incentives from GM in the first two months of the year fell back to earth in March, and that translated into lackluster retail sales," Edmunds Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell said in a statement.

Other automakers reporting sales Friday included:

- Kia Motors America, with a 44 percent increase from March of last year. The Optima midsize car saw a 90 percent sales increase.

- Honda Motor Co. sales jumped 23 percent to 133,650 vehicles on sales of models with good gas mileage. The subcompact Fit led the way with a 49 percent increase, while Civic compact sales rose more than 40 percent.

- Nissan Motor Co. sales jumped 27 percent for the month, the best month in the company's history. Sales of the Sentra compact more than doubled.

- Hyundai Motor America reported a 32 percent sales jump. Sales of the Elantra compact more than doubled.

MLK Breakfast 2023

Photos from The Skanner Foundation's 37th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast.