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Eighteen liquor stores are for sale by state

Thu., May 17, 2012, midnight

ELLENSBURG – Washington state is giving people another opportunity to own a liquor store.

The Washington state Liquor Control Board will hold a live auction May 24 in Seattle for the rights to 18 state stores after the top bidders in an online auction failed to pay their posted bids.

Washington is in the process of privatizing its liquor sales after voters approved an initiative kicking the state out of the liquor business.

Bidders already have paid out $25.9 million for the rights to 149 state stores that were auctioned last month. A bid deposit of $10,000 will be required for the remaining 18 stores, the agency announced Wednesday. Those stores are located in Seattle, Tacoma, Marysville, Enumclaw, Spokane, Kent, Bellevue, Kenmore, Lakewood, Bellingham, Ocean Shores, Kennewick, Vancouver and North Bend.

More information about the auction is available at

Meanwhile, the Washington Supreme Court will hear arguments today over the constitutionality of the measure. At issue is whether the initiative violates state rules requiring measures to address only one subject, because it includes a provision to set aside $10 million for public safety.

Verizon will end unlimited data plans

LOS ANGELES – A Verizon official announced the company will begin forcing users with grandfathered-in unlimited data plans to choose data share plans when they migrate to the company’s 4G network.

With 3G no longer the fastest option, users are expected to migrate to Verizon’s 4G LTE network, and as they do, they will be forced to give up their unlimited plans for Verizon’s tiered data plans, Fran Shammo, chief financial officer for Verizon Communications, said Wednesday at the JPMorgan Technology, Media and Telecom conference.

Deere quarterly profits soar by 17 percent

MOLINE, Ill. – Deere posted a 17 percent spike in second quarter profit Wednesday and boosted its outlook for the year, predicting record-high global demand for its signature tractors, harvesters and seeders.

Analysts had been anxiously awaiting Deere’s take on the year going forward, with the potential for unprecedented crop production lowering commodity prices.

But Deere said that it expects sales for the current quarter to rise 25 percent, easily outpacing Wall Street predictions.

The world’s largest producer of agricultural equipment topped expectations for the quarter that just ended as well. But its revenue for the second quarter fell slightly short of its own growth expectations and shares fell in midday trading.


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