Oregon voters will decide whether to continue funding Medicaid
Oregon Initiative 101 is on the ballot in a special January election, and OPB has a detailed report on how the measure, which would continue taxes approved by the legislature on hospitals and health insurance companies, came to be on the ballot. The funds have allowed Oregon to have a 95 percent rate of insurance, one of the highest in the nation. Willamette Week has a profile of state rep Julie Parrish, the outspoken Republican in a blue district who pushed the initiative to reduce taxes.
Seattle-area county halts reviews of deadly police force incidents
King County, which covers Seattle and its immediate suburbs, has announced it will pause review of five police shootings until the county has a chance consider new reforms over use of deadly force. Advocates for those killed, including pregnant mother Charleena Lyles, supported the move. In related events, Intiative 940, which would require de-escalation training among police and investigations into deadly force incidents across WA state, has enough signatures to qualify for the November ballot.
BC won’t ban foreign ownership of real estate
As real estate speculation continues to escalate prices in Metro Vancouver, BC finance minister Carole James says her party has no plans to institute a ban on foreign ownership, insisting the province’s 15 percent tax on foreign real estate investment is sufficient. Meanwhile, Charles Mudede at The Stranger is alarmed that Seattle is now #3 in the US for foreign real estate investment. “If you are a city like Vancouver, these values totally delink with the region’s economy and float in the pure ether of global surplus cash.”
Spanning the rural-urban divide with Nooksack valley farmers
Knute Berger at Crosscut meets with dairy farmers in the Nooksack valley of Washington to learn about their concerns and hopes. The region had 450 farms in the 1980s, and that number is down to 100 thanks to suburban sprawl and economic pressures. Though these farmers tend toward conservative social and political views, they’re supportive of environmental protection, Berger writes, noting an agreement between the area’s farmers and the Lummi tribe to reduce runoff into the Salish Sea.
“Black Imagination,” a show steeped in black experience
CityArts reports on “Black Imagination,” a show of immersive art at CORE in Seattle. As a response to recent police shootings, creators Natasha Marin and Imani Sims collected narratives from a wide spectrum of black people from across the city: “We asked them how they healed themselves and if they could imagine a space where they felt loved, safe and valued. For some people, that requires a lot of imagination.” Meanwhile, KUOW profiles four up-and-coming Seattle artists of color including choreographer Jade Solomon Curtis and actor Porscha Shaw.
Your anti-NIMBY poem for the day
Perhaps the reign of the NIMBY in Cascadia is starting to fade. A hearing yesterday on a proposed affordable housing project near Seattle’s Discovery Park was packed with people saying “yes in my backyard,” the Stranger reports.
And so it’s fitting that after a Portland resident opposed to affordable housing posted a nasty version of the 12 Days of Christmas, writer Crystal Contreras responded with her own Whitmanesque ode:
“O you NIMBYS, Portland NIMBYS,
So impatient for your lattes, full of froth, full of generational wealth and bylaws…”
That’s all the Cascadia news that’s fit to print in a little email today. –Andrew Engelson
Photo credit: marchers in support of health care in Portland by Another Believer, CC BY-SA 3.0