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Drones add to worries of wildfire fighters

The proliferation of drone aircraft have added a new dimension to the hazards of fighting wildfires, a U.S. Forest Service official said Thursday.

National Forest officials brace for fire season

Area area National Forest officials said Thursday they are anticipating a busier-than-normal fire season this year, starting next month and going through September.

House passes testing reform, change in grad requirements

The state House of Representatives on Thursday passed an updated version of a bill that would temporarily eliminate the need to pass a science test for graduation, but as previously, it is likely to stall in the Senate.

Idaho health exchange needs revenue boost to be sustainable

Idaho's online insurance exchange needs to collect $9 million in total revenue by the summer of 2017 or risk dipping into its limited reserves in order to stay in business.

New Oregon law allows for a year of birth control at a time

Oregon has enacted a first-of-its-kind insurance law that will allow women to obtain a year's worth of birth control at a time, expanding coverage that previously needed to be renewed every 30 or 90 days.

Bill to ban criminal record question on job forms advances

The Oregon Senate has approved a bill making it illegal for employers to ask about criminal records on job applications.

Drought not expected to affect hydro dams too much this summer

COEUR D’ALENE — Despite one of the worst drought years on record, hydroelectric dams in the Pacific Northwest should not see their operations disrupted too much this summer, a regional power planning group was told Wednesday.

Inslee signs measure creating “silver alert” system

OLYMPIA (AP) — Gov. Jay Inslee has signed a measure that creates a new alert for highway signs and traffic advisories when older adults who may be suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia go missing.

Burned-out forests helping some birds thrive

NACHES — On this rocky slope west of Naches, all the trees were killed by a fire last summer, but that doesn’t mean the forest is lifeless.

Hanford in running to be home to Manhattan Project park headquarters

The National Park Service will treat each of the three sites in the new Manhattan Project National Historical Park as equally important, a park service official said Wednesday as he was pressed about which of the sites would play host to the park’s headquarters.

Tease photo

'Raging Grannies' protesting Shell's Arctic drilling arrested in Seattle

Six activists protesting Shell's plans to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean were arrested Tuesday, five who blocked entrances to the Seattle port where the company's massive rig is parked and another who disrupted a port commission meeting.

Spotted owl numbers not only down but also at faster rate

Scientists report that after two decades of attempts to save the species, northern spotted owl numbers in the Northwest are still on the decline — and at a faster rate.

Feds say Southwest, Northwest could see catastrophic fires

Despite a wet spring over much of the nation, the Obama administration warned Tuesday of potentially catastrophic wildfires this summer, especially in the Southwest and Northwest.

Oregon considers 20 percent tax on retail marijuana

The Oregon Legislature is considering imposing up to a 20 percent sales tax on retail sales of marijuana once it becomes available to consumers.

Attorney General to investigate indicted state auditor

Washington’s attorney general said today he is opening a criminal investigation into state Auditor Troy Kelley, separate from the federal tax evasion and other charges he already faces.