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Northwest news in brief

Watchdogs want more on Hanford

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Government regulators and watchdog groups say they want more information about a new Department of Energy proposal to speed cleanup of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, the nation’s most polluted nuclear site.

The agency on Tuesday released a report saying that starting treatment of some of Hanford’s radioactive waste without sending it to the troubled vitrification plant’s Pretreatment Facility could speed work.

Both U.S. Sen. Patty Murray and Gov. Jay Inslee say they need more information about the proposal. Murray says the report is not the comprehensive plan she wanted.

Hanford, located near the Tri-Cities, is the nation’s most polluted nuclear weapons production site. There are 56 million gallons of radioactive waste stored in underground tanks, at least one of which is leaking into the ground.

Public can speak at special session

SALEM (AP) — Members of the public can speak to key state lawmakers on Thursday and Friday about the issues to be considered in a special session of the Legislature.

Gov. John Kitzhaber has called legislators to Salem next week to consider an array of legislation that he says would increase funding for public education.

The plan would cut public-employee pensions, revise the tax code and prohibit local governments from banning genetically modified crops.

Thursday’s hearing begins at 2:15 p.m. The public will be allowed to weigh in after lawmakers question experts.

Friday’s hearing begins with more expert testimony at 9 a.m. Public comment on Friday will be limited to the tax and pension issues.

Both will be held at the state Capitol in Salem.

The public also can call or email lawmakers.

Wash. school board head indicted

SEATTLE (AP) — The president of the Federal Way school board has been indicted on seven counts of felony theft.

William Anthony “Tony” Moore Jr., 49, is accused of stealing more than $150,000 worth of truck tires last year from a tire store based in Portland, Ore., The Seattle Times reported Tuesday. Moore did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Moore unsuccessfully ran for the state House last year. He has served on the school board since 2008. His current term ends 2015. Authorities allege Moore, who owns a used-tire brokerage in Federal Way south of Seattle, worked with an employee of GCR Tire Centers in Portland as part of a scheme to steal more than $150,000 of tractor-trailer tires between March and October 2012.

That employee, Tracy E. Holmquist, has been convicted of seven counts of aggravated theft and is serving 19 months in prison, said Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney Dennis Shen.

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