A Black-led research organization won a nearly $3 million grant from the Biden administration to improve digital equity for marginalized communities in Tacoma.
Black Brilliance Research (BBR), in partnership with the University of Washington Tacoma, got the grant for its Connect Across Tacoma project, which provides households with internet subscriptions and the technology needed to use them. Digital stewards also help people learn digital literacy.
“This funding will allow us to continue our efforts to bridge the digital divide and empower underserved communities with the tools and resources they need to thrive in the digital age,” said Shaun Glaze, lead researcher and director of BBR.
BBR was founded in 2020 during the uprising after the murder of George Floyd. The organization worked in the Seattle community to produce a report about public safety that was meant to provide the basis for a participatory budgeting process that would allow the community to determine the fate of $30 million in funding provided by the city of Seattle. That process has not yet begun. A $10 million participatory budgeting process ran in Skyway and White Center in 2022.
A BNSF train that derailed on tribal land in Skagit County spilled nearly 5,000 gallons of diesel fuel on March 16. The derailment comes amid a new focus on train safety after a separate derailment spilled toxic chemicals in East Palestine, Ohio.
According to the Associated Press, there were no injuries, and the cause of the derailment was unclear that day.
The derailment occurred on the Swinomish tribal reservation. The tribe sued BNSF to stop oil trains running through its land in 2015. The tribe alleged that the company was violating a 1991 agreement that allowed the company to run one train with no more than 25 cars in either direction per day, according to KIRO 7.
Is it already 2024?
Apparently, we’re looking at the 2024 gubernatorial race, and at least one progressive polling organization does not think it will include the incumbent.
The Northwest Progressive Institute tested a field of four possible candidates, none of whom have actually announced that they’re running for the position: Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, King County Executive Dow Constantine, Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier.
Dammeier is the only Republican the organization tested, and the poll also assumed Gov. Jay Inslee would not run for a fourth term.
The survey ran on March 7 and 8 and consisted of 874 interviews. Dammeier took an early lead at 35 percent, followed by 21 percent for Ferguson. Constantine and Franz were tied at 7 percent, but 30 percent of respondents were not sure.
Constantine later announced he would not seek the governorship.
Read more of the Mar. 22-28, 2023 issue.