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Port dispute impacts Christmas tree shipments, too

Japanese McDonald’s chains rationing French fries, Washington apples spoiling before they leave the state and imports of retail goods reaching docks but not reaching shelves — those are some of the impacts from union and port disagreements along the West Coast.

Starbucks: New animal welfare rules

Starbucks, in a major revamp to its animal-welfare policy, has vowed to phase out buying eggs laid by hens tightly packed for life in crowded cages and pork products from farms that use gestation crates.

Port employers seek mediation in dockworker talks

LOS ANGELES — Shipping lines and terminal operators at 29 U.S. West Coast ports asked the union representing 20,000 dockworkers on Monday to consent to federal mediation in contract negotiations, saying the parties remained far from a deal after seven months of talks.

Anglers can look forward to spring salmon runs

The first day of winter has officially arrived, but many salmon anglers are plotting their spring-time calendars when 232,500 upriver chinook are forecast back to the Columbia River.

Seattle tunnel project delayed nine months

SEATTLE— An expressway tunnel central to Seattle’s $3.1 billion roadway overhaul will not open to traffic until August 2017, extending by some nine months a delay-plagued project to replace a waterfront highway, state officials said.

Inslee targets top polluters with billion-dollar cap-and-trade plan

Declaring it “time for polluters to pay their fair share,” Gov. Jay Inslee is proposing a sweeping new cap-and-trade system that would cut carbon emissions while generating $1 billion a year for schools, transportation projects and other programs.

Quake warnings could go public in 2 years

An earthquake early-warning system could be available to the public in as little as two years once enough funding is secured, a top federal scientist said this week.

State: Keep those old license plates

The Washington state law that requires vehicle owners to buy new license plates after seven years is being rescinded in favor of letting owners keep their plates for as long as they want.
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Court: No pay for Amazon warehouse security checks

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that warehouse workers who fill orders for retail giant Amazon don’t have to be paid for time spent waiting to pass through security checks at the end of their shifts.

Powerball winners to quit jobs

OLYMPIA — A suburban Seattle couple who claimed a $90 million Powerball jackpot say they both will quit their jobs at Boeing and then travel, take care of their family and buy a new car.

Workers rally to demand higher minimum wage

OLYMPIA — While diners took cellphone photos through restaurant windows, some 150 people Thursday evening threaded through the parking lot of an Olive Garden, calling for an increase to the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour.

Medical examiner: Actress died of blunt injuries

SEATTLE — A Seattle-area medical examiner says actress Misty Upham, known for her roles in “August: Osage County” and “Django Unchained,” died of blunt-force injuries to her head and torso.

Inslee backs EPA plan to cut emissions

OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee says he strongly backs an Obama administration proposal to reduce emissions from the nation’s power plants.

E-Cycle program hits 250 million pounds

MOUNT VERNON — The state’s electronics recycling program reached a milestone in November, when the program passed the 250 million-pound mark for TVs, computers and other electronics collected since 2009.