01-18-2021  8:38 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
MLK Breakfast 2021 Save the Date
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Online Events Honouring Dr Martin Luther King are Underway

 From a jazz concert and a reading challenge to an online film festival we are all invited to celebrate Dr Martin Luther King and complete his work

Interview: Portland Physician on Coronavirus Vaccine, Reaching Out to Wary Communities

Black Americans report highest levels of distrust as country distributes millions of Pfizer and Moderna Vaccines

Blumenauer Calls for Resignations of Kevin McCarthy and Steve Scalise

Congressman Blumenauer said: "We need to ensure our Republican colleagues acknowledge and accept the consequences for their own involvement in encouraging this insurrection..."

Officials: Republican Lawmaker Let Protesters into Oregon Capitol

House Speaker Tina Kotek said during a news conference about the Capitol operations safety plan that Rep. Mike Nearman, R-Independence, had allowed protesters into the building.

NEWS BRIEFS

St Andrew's Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Features Marilyn Keller

On Sunday, Jan. 17, the St. Andrew community will celebrate the life and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the 9:30...

VA Portland Ramping Up COVID-19 Vaccinations for Portland, Vancouver-area Veterans

Portland and Vancouver-area veterans 75 years of age and older to receive a phone call to schedule their COVID-19 vaccination. ...

NFL Reaches More Than $95M in Contributions to Further Advance Social Justice

The Oregon Justice Resource Center will use funding from the NFL to support the Women’s Justice Project – the first and only...

Oregon State Police Warns Against Armed Takeover of Capitol

The agency also asked Oregonians to report anyone who may be planning an armed takeover to authorities. ...

Oregon Marijuana Sales Soared in 2020, Topping $1B

Oregonians began buying a lot more recreational cannabis in March when Gov. Kate Brown instituted a stay-at-home order ...

Hanford contractor to lay off 30 workers

KENNEWICK, Wash. (AP) — Hanford contractor Mission Support Alliance plans to lay of 30 workers as its Department of Energy contract expires.The layoffs are set for Thursday, the last full business day before the expiring contract held by Mission Support Alliance transitions to a new 10-year...

Brown moves forward with closing 3 prisons in Oregon

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Gov. Kate Brown is closing three Oregon prisons, a decision authorities say would save the state more than million.The governor said she believes the money could be better invested elsewhere, such as early childhood education. The prison closure plan was included in...

Music City Bowl between Iowa and Missouri canceled

The Music City Bowl between Missouri and Iowa was canceled Sunday because COVID-19 issues left the Tigers unable to play.The game scheduled for Wednesday in Nashville, Tennessee, is the second bowl called off since the postseason lineup was set on Dec. 20, joining the Gasparilla Bowl. Overall, 18...

No. 17 Iowa, Missouri renew rare rivalry in Music City Bowl

Missouri (5-5, SEC) vs. No. 17 Iowa (6-2, Big Ten), Dec. 30, 4 p.m. ESTLOCATION: Nashville, TennesseeTOP PLAYERSMissouri: RB Larry Rountree III has rushed for 972 yards and 14 touchdowns on 209 carries and ranks fourth in the SEC. He’s the 23rd SEC player to surpass 3,500 career yards...

OPINION

This is America: White Privilege, Black Lives Matter, and Violence at the Capitol

The violence we witnessed in the United States Capitol on January 6 is nothing new. ...

SPLC Action Fund President: Attempted Coup Displays Organized, Extremist Violence Plaguing the United States

Insidious racism took the form of an American president openly encouraging with “love” violent extremists ...

Commentary: Exit in Disgrace

Will Trump leave in the middle of the night, embarrassed by his four years of crude, rude, lying, and beyond belief incompetence? Or will he be escorted out by a secret service detachment? ...

Georgia Senate Races Will Decide the Fate of Biden’s Presidency 

Voter turnout is reportedly lagging in the more rural and conservative areas of Georgia and is higher in more traditionally Democratic areas of the state ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Correction: Capitol Breach-Civil War story

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — In a story January 16, 2021, about Republican leaders invoking war rhetoric, The Associated Press incorrectly referred to an incoming chairwoman of the Michigan GOP. Instead, she is the incoming party co-chair. A corrected version of the story is below....

Anonymous million gift funding 50 civil rights lawyers

ATLANTA (AP) — The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund launched a million scholarship program on Monday to support a new generation of civil rights lawyers, dedicated to pursuing racial justice across the South.With that whopping gift from a single anonymous donor, the fund plans to...

Israel moves to rein in rights group over 'apartheid' use

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Israel's education minister says he is banning groups that call Israel an “apartheid state” from lecturing at schools — a move that targets one of the country's leading human rights groups after it began describing both Israel and its control of...

ENTERTAINMENT

Journalists prepare for protests where they could be targets

NEW YORK (AP) — While monitoring online chatter about protests at state capitols in advance of next week's presidential inauguration, the Seattle Times came across a chilling description for journalists: soft targets.The phrase drove home the importance of safety precautions being put in...

AP Exclusive: Selena Gomez: Big Tech 'cashing in from evil’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Hours after an angry mob of Trump supporters took control of the U.S. Capitol in a violent insurrection, Selena Gomez laid much of the blame at the feet of Big Tech.“Today is the result of allowing people with hate in their hearts to use platforms that should be...

Phil Spector's death resurrects mixed reaction from skeptics

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Phil Spector was viewed as a man with two distinct personas: The late music producer was regarded as a rock ‘n’ roll genius who elevated the genre with his “Wall of Sound” style in the 1960s and created hits for several big names from the...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

China economy grows in 2020 as rebound from virus gains

BEIJING (AP) — China eked out 2.3% economic growth in 2020, likely becoming the only major economy to...

'Rooting hard for you': Will departure notes end with Trump?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Presidential traditions are usually known for their solemnity and carry the weight of...

What Biden can and can't get from an evenly divided Senate

WASHINGTON (AP) — So what does a 50-50 Senate get President-elect Joe Biden?Washington has barely had time...

12 workers trapped week ago in China mine blast are alive

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese state media say 12 out of 22 workers trapped for a week by an explosion in a gold...

EU insists virus shots will remain voluntary

The European Union sought Monday to ease concerns that citizens might be obliged to get shots against the...

Watchdog: Fossil fuel firms need to curb climate gas leaks

BERLIN (AP) — The International Energy Agency says oil and gas companies aren't doing enough to reduce the...

MLK Breakfast 2021 Save the Date
Evan Perez CNN Justice Reporter

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Justice Department said it won't try to block state laws that legalize marijuana and issued loosened enforcement guidelines for federal prosecutors intended to focus on serious trafficking cases.

Attorney General Eric Holder, in a conference call Thursday morning, notified the governors of Colorado and Washington that the department, for now, will not seek to pre-empt those states' laws, which followed voters' approval of ballot measures that legalized recreational marijuana use.

Marijuana will remain illegal under the federal Controlled Substances Act. But the attorney general issued a memo to federal prosecutors in all states tightening federal marijuana prosecution standards.

Under the guidelines, federal prosecutors are required to focus on eight enforcement priorities, including preventing marijuana distribution to minors, preventing drugged driving, stopping drug trafficking by gangs and cartels, and forbidding the cultivation of marijuana on public lands.

The new guidelines have been months in the making and took on some urgency after citizens in Colorado and Washington approved the ballot measures last fall. Nineteen states and the District of Columbia allow some legal use of marijuana, primarily for medicinal purposes.

The attorney general told the Washington and Colorado governors that the Justice Department will work with the states to craft regulations that fall in line with the federal priorities, and reserves the right to try to block the laws if federal authorities find repeated violations.

The memo to prosecutors also seeks to address one common complaint from medicinal marijuana dispensaries in some states, which have been subject to raids by federal agents because they were deemed too big or profitable.

The size and profitability of marijuana businesses will still be a factor prosecutors can consider, but there also must be additional illegal activities for prosecutors to take action.

The new guidelines don't change federal money laundering rules, meaning that some large banks may still be leery of doing business with marijuana producers and sellers. However, Justice Department officials said there is some leeway for banks to provide services to such businesses, so long as they don't violate the eight priorities being assigned to federal prosecutors.

 

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