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Public News Service - Western

PHOTO: Part of the popular Mount Defiance trail system is within the current boundaries of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area, and part is in a proposal to expand it. That legislation emerged from a House committee this week. Photo credit: Charlie Raines.

SEATTLE - Legislation to expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area near Snoqualmie Pass has been inching its way through Congress for about seven years, but there was good and bad news for Alpine Lakes fans and supporters on Wednesday. The bill (HR 361) was approved with a group of other public lands ...Read More

PHOTO: A hidden-camera investigation by the Los Angeles-based animal rights organization Mercy For Animals, shows a goat being grabbed by the neck at the Ontario Livestock Sales auction house in 2012. The auction house owner has pleaded no contest to violating California’s criminal animal cruelty laws. Photo credit: Mercy For Animals

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. - The owner of a Southern California livestock auction house is facing probation and fines after pleading no contest to animal cruelty charges under California's "downer" law. Charges were brought against Horacio Santorsola after an animal-rights group secretly videotaped wor ...Read More

PHOTO: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says Congress' top priority before its August break should be to "immediately pass" a bill that funds a $17 billion overhaul of the Veterans Administration. Photo courtesy Sen. Reid's office.

CARSON CITY, Nev. - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., is urging Congress to approve bipartisan legislation that would provide $17 billion to improve medical services at the Veterans Administration. Reid told his Senate colleagues he expects them to pass the "Veterans Access, Choice an ...Read More

PHOTO: Officer Briggs Schulz, left, of the Federal Way Police Department shares his views with a group of high school students in a "Teens Against Distracted Driving" presentation. Attorney Jason Epstein (R) asks teens to pledge to not text and drive, and not to ride with friends who do. Photo credit: Sam Fletcher, Premier Law Group

BELLEVUE, Wash. - Laws that ban texting while driving - and that allow law enforcement to cite someone for texting without another reason to pull the vehicle over - are the most effective at preventing distracted driving deaths, according to a new study from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. ...Read More

PHOTO: Glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol tests are free during the Way to Well tour, making stops in communities throughout the Gem State, including a stop in Caldwell on Wednesday. Photo credit: Microsoft Images.

CALDWELL, Idaho - Glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol tests are free to the public during the Way to Well tour, making stops in communities throughout the Gem State, including a stop in Caldwell on Wednesday. AARP Idaho is teaming up with Walgreens to offer the free health information, and AARP ...Read More

PHOTO: Legislation sponsored by Senator Jon Tester that would make it easier for energy companies to lease public lands for renewable energy projects will receive hearings in both the U.S. House and Senate Tuesday. Photo credit: U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

MISSOULA, Mont. - A month ago, backers of legislation designed to make it easier for wind and solar energy companies to lease public land for projects were worried the bills wouldn't receive hearings any time soon. But the proposals are on the calendar Tuesday before committees in both the Senate an ...Read More

GRAPHIC: Residents in northern Nevada are being asked to conserve water as the ongoing drought continues to wreak havoc on municipal water supplies. Photo courtesy of the California Department of General Services.

RENO, Nev. - The severity of Nevada's ongoing drought has prompted the Truckee Meadows Water Authority to call upon its thousands of customers in Reno, Sparks and Washoe counties to conserve water. Mark Foree, general manager of the Truckee Meadows Water Authority, says the lack of water has forced ...Read More

PHOTO: The keynote speaker today at Edufest in Boise is Temple Grandin, Ph.D. She is considered the most well-known person in America with autism, and she'll focus on connecting with kids who are considered gifted, as well as having a disability. Photo credit: TED 2010.

BOISE, Idaho - Parents and educators from throughout the Northwest are in Boise for the "Edufest" gifted and talented education conference. Those attending will learn about ways to motivate students and offer differentiation in the classroom - even under Common Core guidelines. Today's keynote spea ...Read More

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