Afternoon Jolt

By Afternoon Jolt September 29, 2010

Today's winner: King County Courthouse Marshals.

The marshals, who screen for weapons at the entrances to the King County Courthouse, respond to calls for help in courtrooms, and make arrests when necessary, survived the Dow Constantine budget axe yesterday. Unlike the rest of the County's decimated criminal justice department, including Sheriff's Department, the Prosecutor's Department, and the Superior and District Courts, the marshals came out unscathed (so far, that is).

King County Executive Constantine had proposed eliminating the marshals to help close the $60 million county budget shortfall. Presiding superior court judge Bruce Hilyer said he "prevailed on the executive” to retain them.

"Every day in this building, we have incidents where there are threats to the public or judges," Hilyer said. "If a situation gets out of control, we can't maintain court. Calling 911 to restore order is not acceptable."

However, Hillyer's lobbying didn't save the elimination of the Fourth Avenue entrance to the county courthouse, which under Constantine's budget would be permanently closed.

Today's Loser: The Washington Education Association

In another sign the Democrats' marriage to the teachers union is headed toward counseling, all three Democratic incumbents running for state legislature in the 45th District—super liberals state Sen. Eric Oemig and state Rep. Roger Goodman and moderate Rep. Larry Springer—held up 'Yes' signs at a candidate forum last night in Kirkland when asked if they supported charter schools.

The WEA adamantly opposes charter schools, a main tenet of the ed reform movement.

All three Republican challengers—Andy Hill, Kevin Haistings, and Mark Isaacs— also raised their 'Yes' cards.

According to the Redmond Reporter: "A collective 'wow' came from the audience."
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