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  • County Announces L&A Test On Ballot Machines


    your vote countsThe Elections Division of the Thurston County Auditor’s Office will conduct a Logic and Accuracy test on its ballot tabulation machines on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. for the 2015 Special Election. A Logic and Accuracy test, or “L&A,” is a collection of… Read More +

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  • Pot-Related Poison Control Calls Increasing

    cannabis underlightsMarijuana related calls to poison control centers in Washington and Colorado have spiked since the states began allowing legal sales last year, with an especially troubling increase in calls concerning young children. New year-end data show that the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center… Read More +

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  • Kingdome Repairs To Be Paid

    kingdome tilesFifteen years after the Kingdome was demolished in a controlled explosion, King County is paying off the money it borrowed to make emergency repairs in 1994 to falling ceiling tiles. County finance director Dwight Dively said the bonds will be paid off in March, an early thanks to healthy hotel-motel tax revenue due in part to the boost from Seahawks playoff games.

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Lots of Pain Expected in Detroit Following Bankruptcy

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-07_7bca242c54.jpgiStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Filing for bankruptcy means painful changes are ahead for Detroit’s residents, retirees and city workers. But Emergency Financial Manager Kevin Orr, the expert hired to stop the city’s fiscal free fall, argues “it gives us breathing room.” Bankruptcy was the only choice, says Orr. 

“We were being sued almost on a weekly basis,” he says. Detroit owes about $18 billion to 100,000 creditors.  The bankruptcy may lead to a big legal fight over who gets paid.  

Dan McNamara of Detroit’s firefighters union is vowing to fight the bankruptcy filing.

“They can’t just abandon the city and just walk in here and think they can do what they’re gonna do.  They need to talk to us,” he said.

Chapter 9 bankruptcy gives the city a lot of leeway to reject or rewrite union contracts.  Retiree pensions and health care benefits may be slashed.  Bondholders are certain to lose money.

“It’s like taking a band-aid off,” says Detroit City Council President Pro Tem Andre Spivey.  “Do you rip it off or take it off slow?”  

Financial hurt for the city’s creditors is inevitable, he says.

“There’s going to be some pain in the next few weeks or months and maybe even a year or so.  But we will get through it,” Spivey says.

Peter Henning, a law professor at Wayne State University, calls it a watershed moment that takes control of the city out of local hands.  

”Now what you’re talking about is a federal bankruptcy judge deciding who’s going to get paid and how much they are going to get paid,” he says.

The decline of Motown -- the motor city -- has been in the making for decades.  The city’s population has fallen by two-thirds since it was an economic and industrial powerhouse in the 1950s.

Orr says Detroit will stay open for business and bills will still be paid.  The city will provide police, fire and other services at the current level.

“We are planning to get through this process as expeditiously as possible.  We are targeting to get through this late summer or fall of next year,” he says.

But with so many rival claims on Detroit from such a large number of groups and individuals, the process could take longer before the city is on the road to recovery.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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