In The News

01.09.19

Wednesday Q+A With Rep. Derek Kilmer

by Alex Clearfield

Democratic Rep. Derek Kilmer of Washington chairs the new Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress, which will issue a report at the end of 2019 on how the legislative branch can improve its functioning. Kilmer spoke with Alex Clearfield about how Congress should address staffing issues, the technology deficit, and shared services. What would you say are the biggest issues the committee needs to look at? The House is a fixer-upper, and that's evidenced every time a bill is written beh… Continue Reading


12.06.18

Kilmer Throws Economic Development Summit

Derek Kilmer has a new coalition leadership position, a new majority in the U.S. House to work with and a familiar mission to help expand economic opportunity in Washington's 6th Congressional District. The Democrat, who lives in Gig Harbor, was in Elma on Monday to throw an Economic Development and Grants Seminar. He also got a tour of Summit Pacific Medical Center's new Wellness Center. "My big focus is on economic development and how do you create more economic opportunity for more people, … Continue Reading


12.04.18

Senator Stabenow, Colleagues Call for Inspector General Investigation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow urged the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Inspector General Michael Missal to launch an investigation into missed or underpaid VA benefits. Stabenow joined Senators Brian Schatz (D-HI) and John Boozman (R-AR) in a bipartisan letter to the VA's Inspector General calling for answers on how the technical errors occurred, how quickly any reimbursements will be made, and how the VA plans to make sure all benefits will continue to be paid out without… Continue Reading


12.03.18

Schatz, Kilmer Demand All Underpaid Veterans be Reimbursed

Sen. Brian Schatz and Rep. Derek Kilmer sent a letter to the Department of Veterans Affairs demanding that the department pay back an estimated 360,000 veterans who were underpaid. The letter comes following a new report stating that the VA will not reimburse veterans who were paid less than they were owed due to technical errors. "The VA's current position is that the only way to fix this is to freeze current payments. That is Orwellian in its incompetence, and it is offensive in the real ha… Continue Reading


12.01.18

After Risky Delay, D.C. Delegation Pushes Marina Upgrades

by Ted Olinger and Sara Thompson

Months after receiving approval for a $240,500 grant from the state capital budget, the Longbranch Marina was still waiting for permits to begin state-mandated renovations or risk losing that very same funding. After intervention by Sen. Maria Caldwell and Rep. Derek Kilmer's offices, the process now appears ready to move forward. "We have been waiting on National Marine Fisheries (part of NOAA) to give us their OK on our permitting application for about five months," said Clark Van Bogart, pr… Continue Reading


11.30.18

Lawmakers Call for Investigation into Delayed GI Bill Payments

by Julianne Stanford

Following months of delayed and incorrect paymentsto GI Bill beneficiaries, federal lawmakers are calling for an investigation into the Department of Veterans Affairs amid confusion over whether the department intends to reconcile payment discrepancies for student veterans. U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor, and U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington, joined a contingent of senators who sent a letter Friday to VA Inspector General Michael Missal. They requested an investigation after reports e… Continue Reading


11.30.18

New Democrat Coalition Elects Derek Kilmer As New Chairman

by Lindsey McPherson

The New Democrat Coalition on Friday elected Washington Rep. Derek Kilmer to chair the centrist, pro-business caucus in the 116th Congress. Kilmer, who has served as a vice chair of the coalition, will succeed Connecticut Rep. Jim Himes. The New Democrats also elected four vice chairs for the 116th Congress: Reps. Terri Sewell of Alabama, Scott Peters of California, Ann McLane Kuster of New Hampshire and Suzan DelBene of Washington. The coalition welcomed 30 incoming freshmen to their ranks… Continue Reading


11.29.18

Sen. Schatz Demands Unpaid Veterans Be Reimbursed

A Hawai?i federal lawmaker is calling for the Department of Veterans Affairs to pay thousands of veterans the benefits they are owed after they were underpaid due to a technical error. U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i), a top Democrat on the Senate Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee, is joining U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.), Vice Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, demanding that the VA pay back the estimated 360,000 veterans impacted… Continue Reading


11.29.18

Legislators Demand Back Pay for Veterans

Following a new report that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will not reimburse veterans who were paid less than they were owed due to technical errors, U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i), top Democrat on the Senate Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee, and U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.), Vice Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, are demanding that the VA pay back the estimated 360,000 veterans impacted by the errors, said a p… Continue Reading


11.28.18

Lawmakers Introduce Bipartisan Resolution Recognizing 40th Anniversary of Indian Child Welfare Act

by Carol Clark

WASHINGTON, D.C. ? U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and John Hoeven (R-N.D.), vice chairman and chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, respectively, along with U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and U.S. Representatives Karen Bass (D-Calif.) and Tom Cole (R-Okla.), led 46 members of Congress Tuesday in introducing a bipartisan resolution commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), and recognizing its importance to promoting the stability and securi… Continue Reading


11.20.18

Hate Crimes Skyrocket Across the Nation, Almost Double in Seattle Over the Past Year

by Ryan Blethen

Hate crimes increased in Washington by 32 percent in 2017, outstripping a 17 percent national increase in hate-motivated crimes documented in data released Tuesday by the FBI. Washington law-enforcement agencies reported 613 total hate-motivated offenses stemming from 510 separate incidents to the the FBI's Uniform Crime Report last year - everything from homicide and rape to burglary and "intimidation" - more than any other state except California, according to the FBI's data. On a per-capita … Continue Reading


11.20.18

Sound Transit breaks ground on Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension

Sound Transit has begun construction of the 2.4 mile Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension which extends the current rail line from the Theatre District in downtown Tacoma to the Stadium District and Hilltop neighborhoods. The project includes relocating the Theatre District station and building six new stations along the new line. An event at People's Park in downtown Tacoma celebrated Sound Transit's partnership with the City of Tacoma and the Federal Transit Administration to build the extension. Re… Continue Reading


11.19.18

Kingston, Seattle finally connected via fast ferry

by Nick Twietmeyer

Kitsap Transit's new fast ferry, the M/V Finest, took center stage during a grand opening ceremony in Kingston on Nov. 19. Gov. Jay Inslee, Congressman Derek Kilmer, Kitsap County Commissioner Rob Gelder and Kitsap Transit Executive Director John Clauson all took a moment to thank those who helped bring M/V Finest to Kingston. Clauson said he was relieved that the long road to the Finest's first day of service was nearing its end. "There's been a lot of work to get to this point for my staff … Continue Reading


11.19.18

Kitsap Transit launches Fast Ferry service from Kingston to Seattle

by Q13 NEWS Staff

Kitsap Transit is launching fast ferry service from Kingston to Seattle. The new service provides commuters with the option for a 20-minute ride to downtown Seattle. It's an expansion of the successful Fast Ferry program that began in July 2017 to help ease commuting woes for the Kitsap Peninsula. Gov. Jay Inslee and U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer joined Kitsap Transit officials on Monday for the grand opening, though regular service doesn't begin until Monday, Nov. 26. Kitsap Transit will offer a sp… Continue Reading


11.18.18

Group finalizes endangered orcas proposals with ban on tours

by Leah Leach

A state task force on critically endangered Southern Resident orcas is calling for a temporary ban on boat tours as part of a slate of 36 recommendations to Gov. Jay Inslee ahead of the next legislative session. The group wants to suspend whale-watching boat tours focused on the orcas for between three and five years. It made three dozen recommendations to save a species whose population is at its lowest in more than 30 years. The moratorium would apply to all boat traffic intended to view so… Continue Reading


11.16.18

Memorial Service in Gardiner Honors Medal of Honor Recipient

by Jeannie McMacken

Respect, remembrance and rays of sunshine filled the Gardiner Cemetery on Monday afternoon as a memorial service honored the life and service of U.S. Navy Petty Officer Marvin G. Shields. The program was organized by members of the National Sojourners Olympic Chapter 539. Shields, a construction mechanic third class, was killed at Dong Xoai in Vietnam on June 10, 1965. Even though he had been wounded, he worked with Special Forces Second Lt. Charles Williams to destroy a Viet Cong machine gun… Continue Reading


11.15.18

Washington Democrats gear up for majority in US House

by Natalie Brand

Now that Democrats have taken back the U.S. House, here's what it means for Washington's delegation and its seven Democratic members. Rep. Adam Smith, D-9th District, is on track to take over as Chair of the House Services Committee, of which he is currently the ranking member. "Together, we have made strides on national security issues but much more must done to conduct vigorous oversight of the Trump Administration and the Department of Defense," Smith said in a letter to his colleagues. "Sp… Continue Reading


11.14.18

Hate crimes skyrocket across the nation, up nearly a third in Washington

by Ryan Blethen

Hate crimes increased in Washington by 32 percent in 2017, outstripping a 17 percent national increase in hate-motivated crimes documented in data released Tuesday by the FBI. Washington law-enforcement agencies reported 613 total hate-motivated offenses stemming from 510 separate incidents to the the FBI's Uniform Crime Report last year - everything from homicide and rape to burglary and "intimidation" - more than any other state except California, according to the FBI's data. On a per-cap… Continue Reading


11.14.18

Tacoma has high number of missing and murdered Native American women, report says

by Craig Sailor

A report ranks Tacoma sixth in the nation for cities with missing and murdered Native American women and girls. Tacoma tied with Gallup, New Mexico in the report released Wednesday. Both cities had 25 cases. Seattle was No. 1 in the nation with 45 cases. Tacoma's numbers reflect 13 missing, 10 murdered and two unknown cases. The study by the Urban Indian Health Institute, a division of the Seattle Indian Health Board, looked at data from 71 cities. It found over 500 cases where women and girl… Continue Reading


11.14.18

Some motivated to find solutions as reports of hate crime spike

by Hana Kim

Amina Ibrahim says as a Muslim she hasn't personally been targeted but she says there is no question hate crimes are up. "I've heard incidences of people using slurs at people wearing hijabs, physically pushing them and throwing things at them because they are Muslim," Ibrahim said. New FBI data shows that nationwide hate crimes went up by 17 percent across the country in 2017. CAIR says in Washington state that number went up by 32 percent. When you look at Seattle numbers, the cases nearly … Continue Reading

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