Morning Fizz

Challenging the Board's Decision

By Morning Fizz August 9, 2010

1. On Friday, parents—members of a Seattle Schools District  watchdog group called the Shadow School Board—filed an appeal in King County Superior Court challenging the board's decision to award a $450,000 district contract for the 2010-2011 school year to a testing company called the Northwest Evaluation Association.

Their complaint? Schools Superintendent Dr. Maria Goodloe-Johnson, as we reported earlier this year, is on NWEA's board—and there was not a competitive bid process.

2. State Treasurer Jim McIntire was married this weekend at the Olympic Sculpture park. The details, according to one attendee: 9-piece band, good food, and tons of elected officials—Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark, state Reps. Steve Conway, Ross Hunter, and Ruth Kagi, and Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes.

3. Last week, we reported on the independent expenditure money that's pouring in from progressive groups to support liberal candidates in the primary. The top beneficiary of IE money? Democrat Nick Harper, who's running to oust conservative incumbent Democratic Sen. Jean Berkey (D-38, Everett).

In the few days since we filed that report, Harper has gotten even more help—with another $20,000 being spent on his behalf and another $50,000 being spent against Berkey, bringing total IE spending in that race to $193,000.

The new money—a $30,000 spend for TV ads against Berkey—came from a committee called Stand Up for Citizens which is being funded by the Northwest Labor Council's Don't Invest in More Excuses PAC (DIME PAC). DIME PAC has pledged to take out Democrats who didn't vote labor's way last session.

4. Two weeks ago, we reported that the Seattle City Council had a minor victory over Mayor Mike McGinn.

The win? The mayor’s original Transit Master Plan proposal specifically called for looking at Ballard to West Seattle light rail. However, the council dialed that back so before they pre-determine that Ballard to West Seattle should be studied as a light rail option, they’ll be looking at all corridors with all modes in mind. (They've also decided to phase the money to make sure the Mayor follows the game plan.)

The council's transportation committee meets this week. Watch for the battle to heat up.

5. Another transpo battle to watch out for: In the wake of the $3.9-billion-dollar 30-year-shortfall at Sound Transit, watch for Seattle Sound Transit board members to go in to battle mode for funding to extend the First Hill Streetcar line to Aloha St. Back in April, the City Council, with the support of Mayor Mike McGinn, said they would support using any "excess funds" from an under-budget streetcar to extend the line to the north end of Broadway.
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