Schumer eyes a filibuster fix to push through voting rights legislation, but at least two Democratic Senators stand in his way.
Schumer eyes a filibuster fix to push through voting rights legislation, but at least two Democratic Senators stand in his way. Chip Somodevilla / GETTY

Garbage collection not back to normal: According to a press release from Seattle Public Utilities, workers headed out Monday morning to collect our leavings but "determined there are still icy, unsafe road conditions in neighborhoods," so they didn't pick up the trash. The department says "some customers" can expect delays throughout "throughout the week." If your truck doesn't come, then just leave your cans out on the curb with a little plate of cookies and a candy cane for the workers.

School mayhem in every direction: Seattle Public Schools offered COVID tests to students and staff returning after the holidays, but testing sites had long lines and some people were turned away Monday, according to the Seattle Times.

In West Seattle, some reportedly faced a two-hour wait, and some of that time was spent in the sleet and rain, per West Seattle Blog. WSB also reports that the music room at Pathfinder K-8 was burglarized over winter break, and the thief took off with a majority of the woodwind, brass, and string instruments in the room. If anybody sees a middle-schooler hocking clarinets down on 3rd, please buy them and return them to Pathfinder.

I-90 reopens after lengthy closure: The freeway had been closed for much of Monday for at least 70 miles in both directions of Snoqualmie Pass. In the words of a truck driver stuck at the pass: "It is what it is. You can’t do nothing about it (but) take it one day at a time. If you can avoid it, you do it. It's better to be here than in the ditch." Amen, brother.

But maybe don't head out to the trails just yet: Not sure how many of you had hiking plans this weekend, but many of the roads to popular trails remain impassable for those of us without tauntauns:

And if you are driving anywhere today, then take it slow, or else you might wind up in "an eight- to 12-car collision" near Tacoma, the Seattle Times reports. There's black ice all over the roads.

Flooding could be on the way: Officials up in Snohomish County are shifting their focus from snow plows to potential urban flooding, KIRO reports. Reminder: Stay cautious of ice and don't drive into standing water.

Emergency water situation in Friday Harbor: As frozen pipes thaw on San Juan Island, leaks are showing up, and those leaks are slowly draining Friday Harbor's water reserves, KING 5 reports. Crews are trying to find the leaks — many of which apparently popped up at unoccupied homes — but, until then, the city is asking residents to conserve water.

ICU beds lookin' a little full in some local hospitals: The New York Times has a cool and useful data visualization of the number of available ICU beds in a given area. According to the Times' data, Harborview has 8 available ICU beds and Seattle Children's has none, but UW Medical Center has 84 and Swedish and Virginia Mason hospitals have 10 or more. The latest data from Public Health King County shows a 110% increase in Seattle hospitalizations last week compared to the week before (42 people vs 20 people), and one new COVID death since the end of last month.

COVID "rampant" among white-tailed deer in Ohio: Scientists swabbed the nostrils of those rats on stilts and "found evidence that humans had spread the coronavirus to deer at least six times," according to Seattle-based NBC reporter Evan Bush, who was covering a study published last month in Nature. Scientists say they've found no cases of COVID spread from deer to humans, but mutations of the virus could create a new variant in animals, or animals could harbor old variants of the virus, allowing them to return later.

COVID also rampant among Americans:

Starbucks has a new COVID policy for employees: Workers in U.S. Starbucks locations must be fully vaccinated by Feb. 9 or get weekly tests, the Associated Press reports. The company says it's reacting to OSHA's mandate announced back in November.

Some media strategy from three guys who used to be the mayor; unclear who asked for this: Former mayors Mike McGinn, Charlie Royer and Greg Nickels offer some advice to Bruce Harrell, via MyNorthwest. McGinn says don't deny the media interviews (or something?), Royer says don't be "beating up the press," and Nickels says don't read the comments.

Speaking of: After unceremoniously taking office over the weekend, Harrell will be ceremonially sworn in today at 11 am, and he will hold a press conference shortly thereafter. You can watch it live on Seattle Channel. At 9:30 am, Trump Republican Ann Davison will be sworn in as City Attorney, surrounded by SPD's African American Community Advisory Council chair Victoria Beach, Pastor Harvey Drake, hair salon and real estate investor Tony Au, SODO Business Improvement Area executive director Erin Goodman, and textile manufacturer Ron Chow.

Assistant police chief who posted Nazi insignia gets slap on the wrist: Over at the police department in Kent, Assistant Chief Derek Kammerzell posted SS insignia on his door (he claimed it referred to a TV show), once shaved a "Hitler mustache" (he claimed it was part of "Movember"), and joked about his grandfather "to the effect that his grandfather had died in the Holocaust — when he got drunk and fell out of a guard tower," reports the Seattle Times, which received the investigative documents from a citizen group that got them through a records request. City officials decided to give Kammerzell a two-week suspension. The suspension was unpaid but Kammerzell took vacation to make up his salary.

Kent Police Chief Rafael Padilla did not find that Kammerzell violated the department's "truthfulness" policy, for which he could have been fired. Kammerzell told the Kent Reporter he is "deeply embarrassed" and wishes he could "take it back." He claimed he did only a brief internet search about the insignia after watching the TV series "Man in the High Castle," but the attorney who investigated "said it 'was not plausible' that after watching the series — all about Nazis — and searching the Internet as he claimed to have done that Kammerzell 'would not understand the Nazi affiliation,'" according to the Times.

Omicron hits the south: Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana have already broken record daily infection numbers, according to the Washington Post. Though hospitalizations aren't breaking records at the moment, medical officers told the paper they expect hospital overruns all over the region due to low vaccination rates and high numbers of medical workers calling out sick. The Republican governors continue to preach their necromancer gospel, while conservative commentators rail against life-saving masks and vaccine mandates:

Tesla opens up showroom in Xinjiang: The Chinese region is perhaps most widely known as the site of forced labor camps, where some allege "cultural genocide" has taken place, according to the BBC. China denies reports that it forces "hundreds of thousands of minorities, including Uyghurs, into manual labour in Xinjiang's cotton fields."

New York Attorney General Letitia James would like to have a word with the former president, his eldest failson, and Ivanka Trump as part of a civil investigation into whether the Trump Organization "inflated the values of its properties to obtain loans while reducing them to evade taxes," Al Jazeera reports. Trump's lawyers didn't respond to media requests asking for comment on the subpoena, but my understanding is that the law only applies to the indigent, so I wouldn't be surprised if he ignores it and nothing really happens.

After failing to pass a decent social spending package, Senate Dems pivot to voting rights: In a letter to his colleagues, Senate "Majority" Leader Chuck Schumer says he wants to "change" the chamber's filibuster rules to make it harder for Republicans to block election reform legislation that "discourages gerrymandering" and "beefs up portions of the Voting Rights Act that were stripped by the Supreme Court years ago," and he's begging Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema to go along with it, Politico reports. The changes on the table include "bringing back the talking filibuster, forcing the minority to repeatedly put up 41 votes to block bills or eliminating the ability to filibuster a bill from even being debated on the Senate floor," and he wants to hold a vote on the changes by MLK Day. Good luck, Chuck.

Of note:

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Manchin tries to keep his name in the headlines: The future Republican told Axios he'd be "open to reengaging" on Joe Biden's climate and child care agenda if "the White House removes the enhanced child tax credit from the $1.75 trillion package — or dramatically lowers the income caps for eligible families." The CTC gives parents/guardians between $3,000 and $3,600 per kid (depending on age) every year they file taxes. That amount starts to phase out for individuals who make $200,000 or couples who make $400,000.

We end with some lovely but also mildly disconcerting Brazilian guitar work from Luiz Bonfá: