This Week in Seattle: Mayoral race heats up with income tax proposals and new contenders

This Week in Seattle is your weekly dispatch of need-to-know news from the Emerald City. (BigStock Image)

This week in Seattle: The mayoral race heats up; Scoop partners with the city to promote carpooling; Earth Day celebrations kick off; and Gov. Inslee calls for a special session.

Seattle celebrates Earth Day like the nature freaks we are

DSCOVR view of Earth
The DSCOVR satellite keeps tabs on Earth from a million miles away. (Credit: NASA GSFC)

Happy Earth Day! There are events all around town today celebrating this gorgeous blue planet we call home. Champions of government-sponsored science research and policies that support those programs will March for Science at Cal Anderson Park. Local, sustainable food advocates should head over to MOHAI for the Edible City Science Fair. The Student Conservation Association is planning a day of weeding, mulching, and learning about local vegetation. See a full lineup of Earth Day events here. [GeekWire]

Former Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn is running for re-election

Former Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn announced plans to run again this week. (GeekWire Photo / Monica Nickelsburg)

The once and future mayor? Mike McGinn, the Seattle mayor ousted by incumbent Ed Murray, is ready for a rematch. McGinn has thrown his hat in the increasingly crowd mayoral ring, announcing his candidacy at his Greenwood home Monday. McGinn advocated restructuring the city’s budget and making corporations pay for “their fair share” as Seattle deals with growing pains. He also pledged to support an income tax targeted at the city’s wealthiest residents. A few days later neighborhood activist Cary Moon entered the race, advocating taxes on luxury real estate developers. [GeekWire, The Stranger]

Mayor Murray plans income tax on the wealthy

Mayor Murray changes his tune on a city income tax. (GeekWire Photo / Monica Nickelsburg)

Is that an echo? Mayor Ed Murray was whistling a very similar tune to challenger McGinn during a panel of seven mayoral candidates Thursday. Murray said he would champion a city income tax proposal on “high-end” earners in the next few weeks. Between allegations of sexual abuse that he vigorously denies, and worthy adversaries in McGinn, Moon, and lawyer and activist Nikkita Oliver, Murray faces an uphill battle to hold onto his office. [Crosscut, Seattle Times]

Nikkita Oliver slams The Seattle Times in new video

We’ll just let the Seattle mayoral candidate speak for herself here.


Seattle partners with Scoop to get tech workers to carpool

The city of Seattle is shelling out $49,000 to encourage people to use carpooling app Scoop. The funds will trim $2-3 off each trip booked on the app, which connects people who are traveling to and from similar locations. Scoop is only running a limited pilot program in Seattle, however. It covers tech hubs South Lake Union, Westlake, some of Queen Anne, and Belltown. [MyNorthwest]

Deadlocked over education funding, lawmakers in Olympia will enter a special session

Jay Inslee
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee. (Credit: Office of the Governor)

Gov. Jay Inslee has called for a special legislative session to begin Monday after state lawmakers failed to come up with a new budget or strategy to fund K-12 public schools. The state is still playing a $100,000-a-day contempt of court fine, the result of a 2012 Supreme Court ruling that found the state was underfunding public schools, in violation of its own constitution. Lawmakers are struggling to reconcile their differences over education and haven’t even gotten to the budget yet. The regular legislative session ends Sunday. [The Seattle Times]