News for Thursday, April 15, 2021

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Ephrata organizers plan Sage-n-Sun parade
April 15, 2021 1:10 a.m.

Ephrata organizers plan Sage-n-Sun parade

While organizers of the annual Sage-n-Sun festival here won’t stage a concert this year, they are planning a parade for early June.

April 15, 2021 1:05 a.m.

State: 217 COVID-19 cases found among 1.7M fully vaccinated

OLYMPIA (AP) — State health officials said Wednesday that 115 more cases of fully vaccinated people testing positive for COVID-19 have been discovered out of 1.7 million people who have been fully vaccinated in Washington.

Wanda Cottam
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Wanda Cottam

On April 10, 2021, our loving grandmother, mother, sister, daughter and friend Wanda Cottam of Moses Lake, Washington, left this Earth to begin her new journey with our Savior in Heaven.

Russell Lee Burghard
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Russell Lee Burghard

With deep sorrow we announce the passing of Russell “Rusty” Burghard in Moses Lake on April 11, 2021, on his 53rd birthday. He lived most of his life in Moses Lake, Washington.

John William Ostrander
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

John William Ostrander

John William Ostrander (Johnny O), 70, passed away April 9, 2021, in Moses Lake, Washington.

Needles and numbers: Moses Lake mom explores the mathematics of knitting
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Needles and numbers: Moses Lake mom explores the mathematics of knitting

You might not think of math and knitting in the same sentence, but Ranée Mueller does.

Ephrata softball whomps Eastmont, 8-2
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Ephrata softball whomps Eastmont, 8-2

Ephrata High School softball picked up the win at home in their season opener on Wednesday 8-2 over visiting Eastmont High School.

Commentary: Governor’s lockdown orders ineffective against outbreak
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Commentary: Governor’s lockdown orders ineffective against outbreak

It has been nearly two months since I issued my personal challenge to Governor Jay Inslee, Attorney General Robert Ferguson and all elected officials in the state of Washington, to forgo their paychecks/salary until the governor rescinds his COVID-19 lockdown orders.

April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Commentary: City responds to Change.org petition

The City of Moses Lake was recently made aware of a post to a Change.org website that made some incorrect claims about the Love’s development project.

April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Letter: Listen to voters on high school

In last Friday’s paper, Moses Lake School Board member McPartland stated, “The taxpayers of this district did not approve this (the Real World Academy).”

April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Job gains: Grant County unemployment drops between February 2020 and February 2021

Unemployment in Grant County dropped between February 2020 and February 2021, but rose between January and February 2020.

Bill on lead in school water heads to governor
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Bill on lead in school water heads to governor

State House representatives passed multiple bills during a virtual legislative debate Wednesday, including legislation to address lead in drinking water at schools. All bills will head to the governor’s desk.

Four students injured in 2018 bus crash near George awarded $1.5M
April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Four students injured in 2018 bus crash near George awarded $1.5M

SEATTLE (AP) — A jury has awarded four former marching band students at the University of Washington $1.5 million after they were injured in a bus crash on their way to a football competition with rival Washington State University.

April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Cascade Park boat launch closed to public for boat races

Cascade Park’s boat launch, at 8301 Valley Road NE in Moses Lake, will be closed to the public this weekend due to boat races. Signs and barricades will be placed at the docks.

April 15, 2021 1 a.m.

Public hearing set for street change

EPHRATA — The Grant County Board of Commissioners will take public comment at 1:30 p.m. April 27 on a proposal to vacate a portion of a platted road and alley at the Trinidad townsite west of Quincy.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

US Capitol Police watchdog to testify on Jan. 6 failures

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top watchdog for the U.S. Capitol Police will testify for the first time on Thursday about the department's broad failures before and during the Jan. 6 insurrection, including missed intelligence predicting a “war” and weapons that were so old that officers didn't feel comfortable using them.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

More COVID state shutdowns unlikely, despite CDC suggestion

When one of the nation's top health officials this week suggested states dealing with a spring spike of coronavirus cases should “shut things down,” the remark landed with a thud.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden says pause on J&J shots shows gov't putting safety 1st

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign hit a snag Tuesday when federal regulators recommended a “pause” in administering Johnson & Johnson shots. But the White House portrayed the action as important validation of his measured approach throughout the rollout.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden to address joint session of Congress on April 28

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will address a joint session of Congress for the first time on April 28.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala deploy troops to lower migration

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration has struck an agreement with Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala to temporarily surge security forces to their borders in an effort to reduce the tide of migration to the U.S. border.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden wants infrastructure deal, but GOP doubts persist

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden wants Congress to know he's sincere about cutting a deal on infrastructure, but Republican lawmakers have deep-seated doubts about the scope of his proposed package, its tax hikes and Biden's premise that this is an inflection point for the U.S. as a world power.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

US to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan by Sept. 11

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on America that were coordinated from that country, several U.S. officials said Tuesday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Slew of police reform bills headed to Gov. Jay Inslee's desk

SEATTLE (AP) — As Washington lawmakers began wrapping up their work on an ambitious package of police accountability legislation in the past week, reminders of the cause were not hard to come by.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Audit: Unemployment fraud likely higher than $647 million

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The amount of fraudulent payments of unemployment benefits distributed in Washington state during the height of the coronavirus pandemic was likely higher than the $647 million identified by the Washington state Employment Security Department, according to a new set of reports released by the state auditor's office Tuesday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

FBI-led task force created to fight Portland gun violence

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A new FBI-led task force will work with police in Portland, Oregon, to build cases against people responsible for an increase in shootings.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Washington state prisoners released after drug law is voided

SEATTLE (AP) — Gov. Jay Inslee has commuted the sentences of more than a dozen drug offenders in the past few days, freeing them from prison as Washington's legal system struggles with the fallout from a court ruling that voided the state's drug possession law.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Florida to close wastewater reservoir with leak history

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Florida is moving to permanently close the leaky Piney Point wastewater reservoir that poured millions of gallons of water into Tampa Bay while threatening to burst open and flood nearby homes and businesses, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Europe scrambles as J&J vaccine delay deals another blow

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — European countries diverged Wednesday on whether they would push ahead with giving their residents Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine after reports of very rare blood clots in a handful of recipients in the United States.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Tensions rise in water battle along Oregon-California line

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — One of the worst droughts in memory in a massive agricultural region straddling the California-Oregon border could mean steep cuts to irrigation water for hundreds of farmers this summer to sustain endangered fish species critical to local tribes.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Stinging report raises new questions about Capitol security

WASHINGTON (AP) — Shields that shattered upon impact. Weapons too old to use. Missed intelligence in which future insurrectionists warned, “We get our president or we die."

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Russia says troop buildup near Ukraine is a response to NATO

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's defense minister said Tuesday that the country's massive military buildup in the west was part of readiness drills amid what he described as threats from NATO.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden raises concerns with Putin about Ukraine confrontation

BRUSSELS (AP) — President Joe Biden urged Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday to “de-escalate tensions" following a Russian military buildup on Ukraine's border in their second tense call of Biden's young presidency.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Washington state governor OKs bill banning for-profit jails

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — One of the country’s largest for-profit, privately run immigration jails would be shut down by 2025 under a bill signed Wednesday by Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden to address Congress under security, COVID restrictions

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's first address to a joint session of Congress will look like no other in recent memory.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Analysis: Iran's powerful Guard faces scrutiny after attacks

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The recent sabotage at Iran’s main nuclear enrichment facility is just the latest setback for the country's Revolutionary Guard, though the paramilitary force is rarely publicly criticized due to its power.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

EXPLAINER: Charmed by Madoff, SEC later tightened its rules

WASHINGTON (AP) — Until Bernie Madoff’s scheme came crashing down and the biggest Ponzi scheme in Wall Street’s history came to light, he appeared as a charming wizard with a Midas touch. His investment advisory business attracted a devoted legion of clients, including A-list celebrities, rewarding them with steady returns that defied market fluctuations.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden aims for bipartisanship but applies sly pressure

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has begun publicly courting Republicans to back

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Study finds people want more than watchdogs for journalists

NEW YORK (AP) — A study of the public's attitude toward the press reveals that distrust goes deeper than partisanship and down to how journalists define their very mission.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Washington follows feds in halting use of J&J vaccine

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Washington is immediately halting the use of the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine against the coronavirus, following the guidance of the federal government regarding the appearance of rare side effects in a handful of women across the country, the state Department of Health said Tuesday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Big-business pushback against voting measures gains momentum

Big business has ratcheted up its objections to proposals that would make it harder to vote, with several hundred companies and executives signing a new statement opposing “any discriminatory legislation."

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Months after hack, US poised to announce sanctions on Russia

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is preparing to announce sanctions in response to a massive Russian hacking campaign that breached vital federal agencies, as well as for election interference, a senior administration official said Wednesday night.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Senate breaks filibuster on Asian-American hate crime bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate opened debate Wednesday on legislation confronting the

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Putin foe Navalny says he sues prison for withholding Quran

MOSCOW (AP) — Imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny said Tuesday he was suing his prison for withholding the Quran, which he intended to study while serving time outside Moscow.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Epic drought means water crisis on Oregon-California border

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Hundreds of farmers who rely on a massive irrigation project that spans the Oregon-California border learned Wednesday they will get a tiny fraction of the water they need amid the worst drought in decades, as federal regulators attempt to balance the needs of agriculture against federally threatened and endangered fish species that are central to the heritage of several tribes.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden to pull US troops from Afghanistan, end 'forever war'

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden said Wednesday he will withdraw remaining U.S. troops from the "forever war” in Afghanistan, declaring that the Sept. 11 terror attacks of 20 years ago cannot justify American forces still dying in the nation's longest war.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Ukraine's leader requests a talk with Putin, gets no answer

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine's leader has asked for a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin about the Russian troop buildup across his country's border and the escalating tensions in eastern Ukraine, but the request has not been answered so far, his spokeswoman said Monday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff dies in prison at 82

NEW YORK (AP) — Bernard Madoff, the infamous architect of an epic securities swindle that burned thousands of investors, outfoxed regulators and earned him a 150-year prison term, died behind bars early Wednesday. He was 82.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden faces long odds in push for more state 'red flag' laws

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — President Joe Biden faces an uphill battle as he tries to revive a push for more state laws that would allow authorities to temporarily disarm people who are considered a danger to themselves or others.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Florida House moves to limit transgender students in sports

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida lawmakers moved closer to requiring transgender athletes to undergo testosterone or genetic testing — as well as submit to having their genitalia examined — to participate on sports teams in public schools and colleges.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

US agency says women can get abortion pill via mail

WASHINGTON (AP) — Women seeking an abortion pill will not be required to visit a doctor's office or clinic during the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. health officials said Tuesday in the latest reversal in an ongoing legal battle over the medication.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Prosecutors: No charges for officer in Capitol riot shooting

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal prosecutors will not charge a police officer who shot and killed a woman as she climbed through the broken part of a door during the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, the Justice Department said Wednesday.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

IRS chief expects new child payments to start this summer

WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a strain, but the head of the IRS said Tuesday he expects to meet the July 1 deadline in the new pandemic relief law for starting a groundbreaking tax program aimed at reducing child poverty. That means new advance monthly payments of as much as $300 per child could begin flowing to lower-income families this summer.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Business leaders urge Biden to set ambitious climate goal

WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 300 businesses and investors, including such giants as Apple, Google, Microsoft and Coca-Cola, are calling on the Biden administration to set an ambitious climate change goal that would cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% below 2005 levels by 2030.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Former Minnesota cop charged in shooting of Black motorist

BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. (AP) — A white former suburban Minneapolis police officer was charged Wednesday with second-degree manslaughter for killing 20-year-old Black motorist Daunte Wright in a shooting that ignited days of unrest and clashes between protesters and police.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Attack on Iran's Natanz plant muddies US, Iran nuke talks

WASHINGTON (AP) — The attack on Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility is casting a major shadow over Tuesday’s resumption of indirect talks between the U.S. and Iran over resurrection of the international accord limiting Iran's nuclear program.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Red states on U.S. electoral map lagging on vaccinations

SAVANNAH, Georgia (AP) — With coronavirus shots now in the arms of nearly half of American adults, the parts of the U.S. that are excelling and those that are struggling with vaccinations are starting to look like the nation’s political map: deeply divided between red and blue states.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Conservatives propose revised sex ed rules in LGBTQ pushback

PHOENIX (AP) — Two years after Arizona lawmakers repealed a ban on any HIV/AIDS instruction that “promotes a homosexual lifestyle" as they faced a lawsuit, they have approved revamping the state's sex education laws to make them some of the strictest in the nation when it comes to teaching about LGBTQ issues.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

US recommends 'pause' for J&J shots in blow to vaccine drive

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. on Tuesday recommended a “pause” in use of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of rare but potentially dangerous blood clots, setting off a chain reaction worldwide and dealing a setback to the global vaccination campaign.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden eulogizes slain officer as Capitol Police mourn again

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden said Tuesday that “never has there been more strain” on the U.S. Capitol Police as he honored Officer William “Billy” Evans, the second officer on the force to die in the line of duty this year.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Biden's gamble: Will pulling troops revive extremist threat?

BRUSSELS (AP) — At its start, America’s war in Afghanistan was about retribution for 9/11. Then it was about shoring up a weak government and its weak army so that Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida could never again threaten the United States.

April 15, 2021 12:09 a.m.

Analysis: Biden takes a risk pulling troops from Afghanistan

BRUSSELS (AP) — At its start, America’s war in Afghanistan was about retribution for 9/11. Then it was about shoring up a weak government and its weak army so that Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida could never again threaten the United States.