The Washington State Library gives you access to recently published newspaper articles along with the supporting government reports, legislation, court decisions, statistics, and regulations.
The Washington State Library has links to the homepages of many Washington newspapers at Washington State Newspaper Links. Washington State Library cardholders can get access to many of the older articles in the "Archives" through Proquest.
"Comments sought for Mazama pocket gopher draft plan"--Olympia Olympian
The Mazama pocket gopher, a threatened species in Washington, is the subject of a recovery plan drafted by the Department of Fish & Wildlife. The plan outlines strategies to conserve and restore existing populations in seven south Puget Sound areas where wildlife managers believe the pocket gophers have the greatest chance for long-term survival. Five of the areas are in Thurston County, one is in Mason County near the Shelton Airport, and one includes part of Joint Base Lewis-McChord in southern Pierce County. The public is welcome to comment on the draft recovery plan through April 19th. - 03/10/2013
"Flood report says upgrades in county to cost $350 million"--Tacoma News Tribune
With a 5-2 vote this week, the Pierce County Council adopted the Rivers Flood Hazard Management Plan. The plan, which examines flood risks along the Puyallup, Nisqually, White, and Carbon Rivers and offers potential solutions, contends that current flood control structures are inadequate and put the public at risk. Thirty-two projects are recommended, including new and rebuilt levees, new setbacks, and new flood walls, with a total cost of between $350 and $400 million. Potential funding sources include the flood control zone district tax of 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value and federal matching funds that could come as the result of a study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that looks at flooding in the Puyallup River basin. - 02/22/2013
"Audit: Lake Forest Park water-district worker siphoned away $350,000"--Seattle Times
A two year fraud investigation by the State Auditor’s Office has revealed that an office administrator for the Lake Forest Park Water District misappropriated over $350,000 between 2004 and 2011 by altering receipts, charging items on two credit cards, faking reimbursements, and altering time sheets. The money was spent on college tuition for the employee and her daughter, motorcycle and car stereo systems, video games, and a variety of other personal items. The fraud was uncovered during a routine audit when state auditors questioned a receipt and the employee’s explanation was not corroborated by an investigation. The employee was placed on unpaid leave in January 2011 and was fired on Tuesday after the fraud investigation report was released. No criminal charges have been filed, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office has been notified and Lake Forest Park police are investigating. In response to the auditor’s finding that internal controls were not sufficient to safeguard public resources, the water district has hired an outside bookkeeping firm, made one board member the treasurer, and established new financial reporting systems. - 02/19/2013
"JBLM, other mergers save less money than Pentagon projected"--Tacoma News Tribune
A report released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reveals that the round of military base closures and realignments that merged Fort Lewis and McChord Air Force Base has proved more costly than anticipated. In 2005 it was predicted that the nationwide Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC) effort would save $2.3 billion over 20 years, but instead it looks like savings will total about $249 million. Much of the loss in savings is attributed to higher than expected up-front costs, with the Defense Department spending $35.1 billion on construction and consolidation instead of the predicted $21 billion. Fourteen projects accounted for more than 75% of the unforeseen costs. The GAO is planning to release at least one more report on the 2005 BRAC that will offer recommendations on how lessons learned could be used to ensure cost savings on future consolidations. - 07/04/2012