West Seattle Tool Library burgled: The organization is "missing a lot of small tools" and looking for more information about the burglar, West Seattle Blog reports. Missing a lot of small tools, you say? Has anybody checked the halls of Congress? Ha ha ha, thanks everybody, it's good to be back after a long weekend, and I'll be here all week.
More bagels coming to Capitol Hill: Friday can't come soon enough. That's when Rubinstein Bagels plans its grand opening in the old Wandering Goose space on 15th, Capitol Hill Seattle Blog reports. Used to be you couldn't get a decent bagel in this neighborhood without lining the pockets of a state senator, but now the Hill is bagel town U.S.A.
KUOW asks: Should we build a school or a park downtown? In a city facing a massive housing deficit, the Downtown Seattle Association and a Belltown neighborhood group are fighting over whether the city should sell to the school district a patch of land that used to be the entry to the Battery Street tunnel, or whether they should turn it into a park. The correct answer is the city should build the largest residential tower possible. I have no idea if the land would be suitable for such a tower, but we should build as much housing as we can on that patch of land.
Nine in 10 state employees are vaxxed: Next Monday is the deadline for most state employees to be fully vaccinated and the state says about 92% of state workers have met the mandate. Meanwhile, survey results show about 88% of hospital staff in the state will be vaccinated by Monday, KING 5 reports. The Washington State Hospital Association expects up to 5% of hospital staff, or up to 7,500 hospital employees, could leave the workforce.
Elsewhere in vaccination news: "Upwards of 100" Seattle school bus drivers, who work for a private company, may be off the job next week because they haven't met the vaccine requirement, according to KIRO 7. And at King County, about 83% of the county's 15,000 employees are vaccinated with the lowest vax rates at King County Metro Transit, the Sheriff's Office and the parks department, the Seattle Times reports.
The ferries had a bad weekend: More than 150 sailings were canceled Friday due to staffing shortages. Things had improved by Sunday, although about 50 sailings were canceled, KOMO reports. The ferry system has long been dealing with an aging workforce and about 200 employees are unvaccinated, according to KOMO.
Bruce Harrell had a bad weekend: Lorena González's consultant, Heather Weiner, laid it all out in a short Twitter thread. First, the Seattle Times wrote about the former city council president throwing his weight around in a wage-theft investigation of the Royal Esquire Club, a club for Black men that Harrell oversees. Then Erica Barnett tweeted out some images and a video from Facebook showing Harrell milling around at a maskless fundraiser thrown by a luxury condo developer "that drew more than 200 people Friday evening." (Other public figures photographed without masks include Burien Mayor Jimmy Matta, Port of Seattle candidate Hamdi Mohamed, and former Gov. Gary Locke, according to reporting from the Times.) After that story came out, Harrell pulled out of a candidate forum last-minute, claiming that the moderator, Barnett, wasn't impartial because her publication, Publicola, endorsed Lorena González. Mhmm. Doesn't exactly build confidence in a Harrell administration's relationship with the press, or with following public health guidelines.
Gook luck getting to Victoria, BC: The fast ferries that take you there will dock until next spring due to lack of demand, KING 5 reports. The CEO blames Canada.
Been a minute:
More Amazon workers may be working from home: After initially saying it would return to an office-centric culture, then saying it would allow employees to work from home part-time, Amazon now says it will leave decisions about whether to work remotely up to managers. "We expect that there will be teams that continue working mostly remotely, others that will work some combination of remotely and in the office, and still others that will decide customers are best served having the team work mostly in the office,” CEO Andy Jassy wrote in an email to employees Monday, according to GeekWire.
The "Seattle Is Dying" crowd begins raising money for a Republican City Attorney: Mayor Ed Murray's public safety advisor — the guy who crafted the "9 1/2" block strategy" that clearly got rid of drug dealing downtown for good — started a PAC along with Victoria Beach and SoDo BIA director Erin Goodman to back Ann Davison, who cannot wait to move up the ranks in the failed War on Drugs. So far, it's full of the same ol' big biz dorks who fund all the conservative candidates:
Recent disclosure from the new anti-NTK/pro Ann Davison PAC, "Seattle for Common Sense," run by the "Seattle Is Dying" crowd: Nearly $145K from real estate moguls, Trump's biggest donor in WA, big wig tech bros (AMZ, MSFT), retail, Ian Eisenberg, at least one Mom for Seattle... pic.twitter.com/i5DYHEE6cR
— Rich Smith (@richsssmith) October 11, 2021
Carpenters back latest contract deal: After a strike last month, members of the Northwest Carpenters Union approved a new contract with a 54%-46% vote, the union said in a press release Monday night. Union members have been divided, with some accusing union leadership of failing to get them a good enough deal and doing a shitty job organizing an effective strike. Catch up on the dispute in this piece from Hannah.
Seattle will restart mobile vaccine clinics: Now that some people are eligible for boosters, the city will offer a drop-in vaccination site at the Amazon Meeting Center as well as mobile clinics from the Seattle Fire Department, the Seattle Times reports.
Most of the world's population has suffered because of climate change: Research published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change used machine learning to find that 85% of the world's population has "experienced weather events made worse by climate change," the Washington Post reports. In the United States, climate events have caused at least 388 deaths and more than $100 billion in damage, according to the Post. And yet, Democrats in Congress can't get Manchin and Sinema to pass a budget that would do something about this.
Direct payments or tax credits? Democrats can't agree on how to help first-time homebuyers, especially people of color. Black Americans have lower rates of homeownership, driving this country's wealth gap. "One of the thorniest parts of the debate," Politico reports, "is whether all first-time homebuyers should be eligible for government aid or if it should be further targeted at first-generation buyers, whose parents do not own a home."
Moderna doesn't plan to share its vaccine recipe: The company has "concluded that scaling up the company's own production is the best way to increase the global supply," the Associated Press reports. The UN has called on Moderna to share its formula as low-income countries struggle to vaccinate their populations.
Another huge flood in China: Al Jazeera cites state news sources in its report on 15 dead and over 100,000 displaced "after 19,500 houses 'collapsed'" following heavy rains Shanxi province. "At least 60 coal mines in the province have suspended operations due to the floods, according to a local government statement, even as the country faces a power supply crunch," the outlet reports.
The UK's early "herd immunity" strategy was disastrous: A new report on the island's COVID-19 strategy dubbed it "one of the most important public health failures the UK has ever experienced," which is certainly one way to say that the country could have avoided "many thousands of deaths" if only its scientists had taken seriously the infection data coming out of Italy and China at the time, the BBC reports. The report blames the scientists for "groupthink" and the MPs for not checking the scientists.
I leave you with "Maybe It Was Memphis" by Pam Tillis: This song magically popped into mind over the weekend (via Spotify algorithm that began with yet another deep dive into Trisha Yearwood's catalogue), and I can't wait to sing it at a karaoke fundraiser thrown by a luxury condo developer with 200 elders and kids walking around. JK! I'll keep singing it alone in my studio apartment while editing the Stranger Election Control Board's 2021 general election endorsements, which drop tomorrow morning. Hold on to your butts.