In brief: Pedestrian killed in hit-and-run
A pedestrian was killed in a hit-and-run collision Tuesday night on state Route 231 in Stevens County.
Emergency personnel responded to the report of a woman in the roadway about two miles north of Ford, Wash., and administered CPR. The woman, who was not identified, was pronounced dead by the Stevens County Fire Department about 8 p.m., the Washington State Patrol said in a news release.
The northbound lane of the highway was blocked as investigators processed the scene, the WSP said.
Murray picked to lead Senate majority
OLYMPIA – Senate Democrats have elected Sen. Ed Murray as their majority leader.
The decision was made at a caucus meeting in Seatac on Tuesday. Murray, D-Seattle, ran unopposed and was elected unanimously to the two-year term.
Other leadership positions in the caucus are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. The vote comes with one key Senate race still close as vote-counts continue. It could head into a recount.
Democrats currently hold a 27-22 majority in the Senate with at least two senators willing to cross party lines to side with Republicans. If Republicans maintain incumbent Sen. Don Benton’s seat, Democrats will hold a narrower 26-23 majority.
Murray replaces former Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown of Spokane, who did not seek re-election this year.
Career fair today at North Idaho College
A “college to career” showcase today at North Idaho College will allow students and others exploring careers to meet with industry leaders and business professionals.
The free event will be at the Edminster Student Union Building from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“This will be an opportunity for them to talk with as many professionals as they wish all in one setting,” said Gail Laferriere, NIC assistant director for Career Services.
The showcase is a collaboration with NIC and IdahoGOES, a consortium that includes NIC, the University of Idaho, Lewis-Clark State College, Idaho State University and Boise State University.
Those who attend will have a chance to win an iPod by filling out a survey after their visit. Information: (208) 769-7700 or (208) 667-2588.
Two new ferries given tribal names
TACOMA – The Washington Transportation Commission has decided to name two new state ferries the Samish and the Tokitae.
The commission says the names selected at Tuesday’s meeting in Tacoma keep the tradition of giving ferries regional tribal names.
Among the names that didn’t float were Ivar Haglund and four other tribal names: Cowlitz, Hoquiam, Muckleshoot and Sammamish. Haglund was founder of the Ivar’s seafood restaurant chain.
The first of the 144-car ferries under construction will be named Tokitae, a greeting meaning “nice day, pretty colors.” It’s also the name of a Washington orca better known as Lolita at the Miami Seaquarium.
Samish is a tribal word meaning “giving people.”
Mount Rainier passes close
MOUNT RAINIER, Wash. – The Washington Transportation Department has closed two passes on the east side of Mount Rainier for the winter.
The department says Chinook Pass on Highway 410 and nearby Cayuse Pass on Highway 123 have been closed by recent snow and avalanche danger.
Fire causes $1 million in property damage
EVERETT – The loss of a building destroyed in a deadly three-alarm fire in Everett is estimated at $1 million, and that doesn’t include the contents.
The fire displaced residents in 13 apartments in the two-story building. The 118-year-old building also had a flea market, pizza parlor and cabinet shop on the main floor.
The city of Everett said police and fire investigators continued to look for the cause of Thursday’s fire.
Authorities had to wait for demolition work to stabilize the building Saturday before they could recover a body that was visible. The person has not been identified. Neighbors at the scene said one apartment resident had not been accounted for.
An adjacent building has smoke and water damage and tenants were allowed back inside Tuesday to recover belongings.
Thieves steal wire worth $25,000
BOISE – A construction company says thieves stole more than $25,000 in copper wire from an Elmore County construction site.
The Idaho Statesman reports employees discovered the industrial cable used to run heavy equipment was missing early Monday from the site near Interstate 84.
Western Construction estimates replacing the wire and repairing damage to equipment will cost $50,000.
The company is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest.
Thieves target the valuable copper to sell for cash at scrap yards.
Court rejects robbery appeal
LEWISTON – The Idaho Court of Appeals says a man who pleaded guilty to robbing a bank in north-central Idaho doesn’t have the right to appeal his sentence.
David L. Payton was sentenced in January to at least eight years and up to life in prison for robbing a Lewiston bank.
He pleaded guilty to two counts in connection with the robbery, and in exchange, prosecutors dropped three additional counts.
Payton appealed, contending the sentence was excessive. The Lewiston Tribune reports that on Friday, the appellate court turned down that appeal.
The three appellate judges found that Payton waived his right to challenge his sentence when he made the plea agreement.