Seattle Police Launch "Safe Place" Initiative: Fifty Capitol Hill business owners have posted the rainbow-colored badge decals advertising their businesses as "safe places," Capitol Hill Seattle reports. The program has been in the works for some time. LGBTQ Liason Officer Jim Ritter says if someone feels threatened, they should duck into one of these places and call 911. "It addresses a lack of opportunity," Ritter told me in March, "when people are confronted by someone who is engaging in hateful talk or a hateful criminal act." The Safe Place website includes a page designed to solicit community input about hate crimes or hate incidents beyond strictly reporting a crime to police.
They Found the Stolen Ezell's Food Truck: "The Ezell’s Express food truck plucked from a Kent storage facility over the weekend was found in Seattle Tuesday evening," the Seattle Times reports. "The truck was abandoned under the Spokane Street Bridge, owner Jennifer Stephens said. Many items were missing, and the exterior was vandalized." Ezell's hopes to get the truck up and running again in a few weeks.
This Is the Solution to the Housing Affordability Crisis? Mayor Ed Murray was on hand yesterday to tout the opening of Anthem apartments at the corner of Yesler and 12th Avenue, David Kroman reports for Crosscut. About one-third of the units are "'workforce housing,' units reserved for renters who earn between $40,820 and $53,380 a year—or 65-85 percent of Seattle’s median income (AMI)." But, Kroman points out, "The average market-rate rent on First Hill, the official location of Anthem, is just over $1,200 a month. By that standard, the market price for a one bedroom on First Hill is already the same as what Anthem is calling 'affordable' housing." You really should read the whole thing.
Home Prices Are Rising at the Fastest Rate in Eight Years: "That's according to data from the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices released this week, "Puget Sound Business Journal reports, "which showed a 7.5 percent jump in Seattle-area home prices in the last year. Prices were up 2.3 percent in March alone."
Gentrification Continues Apace in the Central District: The population of black people in the Central District has long been in decline, and if current trends continue, "within a decade, the CD will be less than 10 percent black—not so different from Seattle as a whole," reports Gene Balk. "They redlined us in; now they’ve redlined us out," said longtime resident Rosalie Johnson.
Olympia Police Officer Involved in Shooting Finally Interviewed by Investigators: "But a final report into last week's shooting is weeks away," KOMO reports. At a public hearing about the incident, speaker Heather Stewart addressed the police chief: "For you to claim racism did not play a role in this incident of extreme violence establishes an embarrassingly naive stance that has already compromised the integrity of any investigation."
No Hockey Team Offers on the Table for SODO Stadium: "Even with indications that Seattle could be a viable expansion market for the NHL," the Associated Press reports, "no one has come to [billionaire Chris] Hansen's group with a proposal for a hockey franchise to be the initial occupant."
FIFA Indicted: At the soccer governance body's annual meeting yesterday, Swiss police made a number of arrests of high-ranking FIFA officials. "The charges, backed by an FBI investigation," reports the New York Times, "allege widespread corruption in FIFA over the past two decades, involving bids for World Cups as well as marketing and broadcast deals."