The King County Council approves $42 million budget to assist with courthouse backlog: Currently there are 6,000 cases that are waiting a plea or trial and the budget, which comes from federal pandemic relief funds, will allow the hiring of both full-time and temporary positions to help process that backlog, reports KOMO. But, as Councilmember Girmay Zahilay points out, awarding these funds to the courts "may not result in the access to justice we're hoping for."
Bob Odenkirk hospitalized: The actor collapsed on the set of the sixth and final season of Better Call Saul in New Mexico, a spin-off of Breaking Bad where he plays criminal defense lawyer/con-man Saul Goodman. According to Variety, crew members "immediately called an ambulance" and he is currently in the hospital in unknown condition. The cause of his collapse has not been made public.
New park coming to the waterfront: Yesterday, the Office of the Waterfront and Civic Projects said they would begin construction in late 2022 on a new park on Pier 58, replacing the Waterfront Park that partially collapsed last year, reports Seattle P.I. Plans include a sick-looking 18-foot jellyfish climbing structure (for kids), a central event space, and an all-gender public restroom. The project will take around two years to complete. Check out more pictures here.
Weather break: It's going to be a hot one!
Just how warm are we talking? Here's a look at the range of likely temperatures for Friday afternoon and Saturday morning around Western Washington. And of course, you can always get the forecast for your location at https://t.co/xJOonZ70CK #wawx pic.twitter.com/fqQwInf6hf
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) July 28, 2021
Biden to announce a vaccine requirement for all federal workers and contractors this Thursday: If they do not comply, then they must submit to regular COVID-19 testing, reports CNN. The president is also expected to "lay out a series of new steps, including incentives" to get more people vaxxed up.
On top of that: Mask are again required for all members of the House of Representatives and the White House, regardless of vaccination status.
Huge explosion at German industrial park for chemical companies leaves two dead, 31 injured: On Tuesday, firefighters spent four hours extinguishing a fire that came along with the explosion, reports AP. Occurring in Leverkusen, near Cologne, city officials tweeted that the air pollution measurements "do not show any kind of abnormality." As of Tuesday evening, five people are still missing.
At least nine Seattle bars closed temporarily over the weekend because of COVID: The Unicorn, Jupiter, Shorty's, Rumba, and Inside Passage are among those who had to close their doors because at least one vaccinated worker either came down with the virus or came into contact with someone who had the virus, reports Tan Vinh over at the Seattle Times. Unicorn owner Adam Heimstadt said that when the bar reopens this weekend, they will require proof of vaccination in order to enter. Meanwhile, Jupiter owner Joey Nix says when they reopen, the bar will move capacity down to 50%, re-install plastic shields, and are considering a vaccine card mandate. "We need to all join together to require a vaccine card," said Heimstadt. "It's the only way."
A shooting in a Sea-Tac park leaves one dead: Around 8:30 pm last night, officers responded to reports of a shooting in a park near Tyee High School, reports KIRO 7. Authorities said they found a dead person at a basketball court with witnesses saying the suspect fled the scene. They are still searching for the suspect as the investigation remains ongoing.
Has anyone been watching LeVar Burton on Jeopardy? UgHHHhhhhHH he's so cool—I love his voice! He's guest hosting the iconic quiz game show this week after fans made a petition advocating for his place behind the lectern. While his debut show also saw a record-setting negative Jeopardy score ever, I still think he should get the full-time gig.
Remington offers $33 million settlement to the families of the victims killed in the Sandy Hook massacre: The gun manufacturer offered $3.66 million each to nine families "relating to the shooting that killed 20 children and six adults in Newtown, Connecticut," reports CNN. The lawyers for the families said in the statement that they will "consider their next steps."
Trump-endorsed Republican loses out to self-styled "Reagan Republican" in Texas special election: The Trump-approved Susan Wright lost out to Jake Ellzey in a special election near Dallas for a US House seat last night, reports The Guardian. Ellzey came from behind to defeat Wright—the widow of the late Rep. Ron Wright who died of COVID in February—snagging over 53% of the vote. According to The Guardian, Ellzey did not try to distance himself from Trump, but rather raised more money and flouted other endorsements. The race may show the limits of the former president's influence with voters, a data point to pocket as 2022 rounds the corner.
Simone Biles is also bowing out from the individual all-around gymnastics final in Tokyo: Despite qualifying for first place in the competition, the gymnast says she's prioritizing her mental health over competing, reports Buzzfeed News. Yesterday, Biles pulled out of the all-around team finals after her first rotation, also citing the importance of her mental health. We love a mental health icon!
Filing away to read later: A profile of the man who "does not make poppers."
A crumb of good news for Capitol Hill: Eater Seattle reached out to a H Mart representative about their forthcoming location near the Capitol Hill light rail station, who said the 16,000 square foot store will probably open "sometime this fall." Lots of hedging, but we'll take this as a win! Whenever it opens, the Capitol Hill location will be the Korean-American grocer's third location in the city, in addition to the chain's higher-end offshoot District H in SLU. I personally am foaming at the mouth I'm so excited!!!!
For your listening pleasure: Kim Ann Foxman's remix of The xx's "Sunset."