Local Politics

Benton County sheriff recall election set for August 3

PROSSER, Wash. — After eight days of verification and canvassing, Benton County Auditor Brenda Chilton officially certified the signatures on the recall petition for the Benton County Sheriff Jerry Hatcher today. According to a release issued by Benton County officials,…

Bid to have House vote on governor's emergency powers fails

Members of the Oregon House narrowly have defeated a move to consider a bill that would give the Legislature oversight of the governor’s emergency powers, enacted most recently to address the coronavirus pandemic. The motion to pull the bill from the rules committee was defeated with 28 votes against doing so and 27 in favor, including several Democrats. One republican and one Democrat are the chief co-sponsors of the bill. The House Republican caucus noted in a statement after the vote that all Republican House members want to make the governor accountable to the Legislature.

Security fencing removed from Washington Capitol campus

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The security fencing around buildings on Washington state’s Capitol campus was removed Tuesday, four months after the barriers went up during national unrest tied to the presidential election. The Olympian reports enhanced security measures have been in…

Inslee pauses 'Healthy Washington' phases for two weeks

OLYMPIA, Wash. — With counties throughout Washington state preparing for a rollback, Governor Jay Inslee announced a two-week pause to the 'Healthy Washington' guidance. This means that all counties in Phase 3, including Benton, Franklin and Yakima Counties, will remain…

Tri-Cities COVID-19 metrics suggest a return to Phase 2 next week

KENNEWICK, Wash. — Today's coronavirus metrics from the Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD) likely provides the bi-county region's final update before public health leaders re-evaluate 'Healthy Washington' standing. Given the current state of the coronavirus pandemic in Benton and Franklin Counties,…

Inslee rescinds hiring freeze for Washington state agencies

OLYMPIA, Wash. — After nearly a year, Washington Governor Jay Inslee officially rescinded a May 2020 directive to freeze hiring for state agencies, personal service contracts and equipment purchases. The announcement was confirmed by the Governor's office, which provided a…

Yakima County judge blocks some virus rules on farms

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — A Washington state judge has blocked some coronavirus-related restrictions on farms and orchards meant to protect farmworkers. Yakima County Superior Court Judge Blaine Gibson issued an injunction last week that stops the state from enforcing a…

'Culp for Congress' site up, announcement Friday in Kennewick

KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Loren Culp on Friday is formally announcing his candidacy for Washington’s 4th Congressional District, running against fellow Republican Dan Newhouse. Friday morning, Culp officially launched culpforcongress.com. In a Facebook Live video on Tuesday night, Culp said,…