Northwest News Network

Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley is not expected to testify in his real estate services and fraud trial.

Instead, the first-term Democrat is counting on his defense team to convince a jury to acquit him of an array of charges that include possession of stolen funds, money laundering and filing false tax returns.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee Monday signed into law an update to the state's two-year budget. It puts more money into the state's mental health hospitals and pays for costs from last summer's wildfires.

The governor also wielded his veto pen.

An apparent surge in leakage from a huge tank of radioactive waste set off alarms at the Hanford nuclear site in south-central Washington. This involves an aging, double-shelled tank that contractors were slowly pumping out.

Keep your kicker or donate it?

Oregon taxpayers have the chance to donate their kicker rebate to fund state schools as they fill out their tax forms this year. But hardly anyone is choosing to do that. So far this tax season, less than one-half of one percent of Oregonians are choosing to donate their kicker.

When Tim McClure was 42 years old, he was convicted of illegally growing marijuana on his ranch near The Dalles, Oregon. And at this time last year, McClure was living with the shame of being a felon.

"I don't think it's the measure of me as a man,” McClure said 2015.

Closing arguments are expected Tuesday in the trial of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley. The defense plans to call its last witness Monday.

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg wants to make his office nonpartisan. The Republican said he will ask the county council to send a charter amendment to voters this fall.

After five weeks, the end of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley's trial is in sight. Defense attorney Angelo Calfo has spiced up the at times eye-glazing real estate services and tax fraud trial with surprises.

After opening statements, Calfo moved for a mistrial. After the prosecution rested, he moved for most of the charges to be dismissed. The judge rejected both ploys.

Then on Thursday, Calfo did something that can fairly be called unusual for a criminal proceeding: he called as a defense witness the lead FBI agent on the case.

An Oregon-based nuclear company presented a detailed timeline Thursday for the deployment of its first small modular nuclear power plant. An executive from NuScale Power presented the roadmap during a keynote address to the International SMR and Advanced Reactor Summit taking place this week in Atlanta.

People who are interested in solar energy but don't own the perfect roof on which to install solar panels may have the option to buy into a bigger, centrally-located project. These are called shared solar or community solar. There's a boomlet of such projects in Washington state right now, while there are hardly any in sunnier Oregon and Idaho.

But Washington's generous solar incentives are coming under scrutiny.

When home buyers and sellers sign a HUD-1 settlement statement at the closing of a real estate deal, they sign away their rights to the money they agree to pay in closing fees.

That was the testimony Wednesday of the first defense witness to be called in the real estate services and tax fraud case against Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley.

More Oregon taxpayers than normal are facing a longer wait for their refund this year. But as a later-than-usual April 18 filing deadline approaches, the Oregon Department of Revenue said it's clearing out the backlog.

The prosecution has rested its case in the trial of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley and the defense called its first witness Wednesday morning. But before that came a dramatic courtroom moment.

The unemployment rate in Washington state held steady at 5.8 percent for the fourth consecutive month in March. But in its latest jobs report out Wednesday, the state employment department reported steady hiring across most of the economy.

Egyptian cotton sheets, meals with his campaign manager and a trip to Paris for his wife, a French professor. These are among the “disallowed’ tax deductions Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley claimed on his business tax filings during the years 2011 and 2012.

Tax issues have taken center stage in the trial of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley Tuesday, as an IRS agent and Kelley’s defense attorney sparred over whether Kelley broke tax laws.

This story has been updated.

The outcome of the real estate services fraud case against Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley could hinge on the testimony of Jason JeRue who served as operations manager for Kelley’s former company, the Post Closing Department.

The big Japanese earthquake and tsunami of 2011 happened more than five years ago, but debris from that disaster is still washing ashore on the Pacific Northwest coast. The chief of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration visited Long Beach, Washington, Friday to hear about the ongoing response. 

During her second State of the State address Friday, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown renewed her call for the legislature to approve a massive transportation funding package.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown will deliver the 2016 State of the State address this Friday in Portland. It's her second one since taking office last year in the wake of John Kitzhaber's resignation.

So far Brown's office has released few details about what the governor will talk about.

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