1. In a report issued yesterday, the Seattle Human Rights Commission concluded that the city's police oversight process violates US human rights standards and recommended several remedies.
First and most substantively, the commission said the Office of Professional Accountability Review Board, which oversees investigations into alleged police misconduct should be turned into an independent appeals panel "for citizens who are not satisfied with the outcome of police misconduct investigations."
The commission also recommended adopting "Community Problem Oriented Policing (CPOP) as the principal strategy for addressing police misconduct and police reform problems," and suggested that SPD and the city's Office for Civil Rights work together to investigate use of force incidents by officers through the lens of the city's racial equity policy "to determine whether there is a disproportionate impact on communities of color or other vulnerable populations within Seattle."
Read the whole report here.
2. State Sen. Steve Litzow (R-41, Mercer Island) may have been a hero among liberals yesterday (the moderate Republican announced he supports gay marriage legislation), but later this week, he and moderate Democrat state Sen. Rodney Tom (D-48, Bellevue), are introducing an education reform bill that will make most Democrats cringe.[pullquote]The governor's transportation package will be entirely focused on operations and maintenance and will be paid for with transpo fees.[/pullquote]
Litzow and Tom—who's already reintroduced his controversial layoff guidelines bill from last year that prioritizes evaluations over seniority when teachers' jobs are being cut—are said to be introducing another teacher evaluation bill.
And their ed reform colleague in the house, state Rep. Eric Pettigrew (D-37, S. Seattle) is queuing up a quasi-charter schools bill. Pettigrew is unveiling his bill later this week.
3. In other Olympia-related news: Gov. Chris Gregoire is giving her big state of the state speech today. She's likely to announce a transportation funding package, rumored to be a little less than $5 billion.
The package will be entirely focused on operations and maintenance, according to Fizz sources, and will be paid for with transpo fees.
4. The University of Washington's nursing school has proposed eliminating its training programs for nurse-midwives.
According to a letter from nursing school dean Dr. Marla Salmon distributed to supporters of the program, the midwife program was targeted because there are no tenured nurse-midwives teaching in the program; because nurse-midwifery was "determined not to meet a societal need" (maternal and newborn health were not considered societal needs in the evaluation process), and because only tenured or tenure-track professors were allowed to vote.