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Avista recap and thanks for Saturday storm

Avista recap and thanks for Saturday storm

Avista once again is expressing their gratefulness for customer patience and support after recovering from the second major storm in just two weeks.

It took only three days to restore power to all 48,000 customers impacted by the August 2 storm, which rolled across the inland northwest just six days after the July 23 storm. The last storm resulted in the worst damage to the system since an ice storm in 1996.

“It's an amazing achievement to restore power to all of our customers within a matter of days following the one-two punch we received from Mother Nature,” said Avista Utilities President Dennis Vermillion. “Given the magnitude of damage from these back-to-back storms, I have the deepest respect for all of our employees who were involved in restoration efforts, especially our Avista crews and the contract crews who worked tirelessly in the heat to turn on the lights and get the air conditioning and fans blowing for our customers.”

Washington fourth in nation for reducing uninsured adults

Washington fourth in nation for reducing uninsured adults

A new Gallup poll puts Washington state fourth in the nation for reducing the number of uninsured adults since the new healthcare law took effect at the beginning of the year.

Washington dropped from 16.8 percent in 2013 to just 10.7 percent in the first half of 2014.

Governor Jay Inslee released a statement about today's report saying, “Gallup has confirmed what we know from our experience here in Washington: expanding coverage for working people in Washington by effectively implementing needed reforms makes a huge difference in getting people insured so they can get the health care they need. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act we enrolled more than 600,000 people in health coverage through our exchange, the Washington Healthplanfinder. We have a lot to be proud of, and will continue doing everything we can to make the ACA work for the people and businesses of Washington.”

Working 4 you: Is your news feed biased?

Working 4 you: Is your news feed biased?

As the crisis in Gaza and Israel plays out, the world is paying attention online. That's where most of us get our information, and it could be influencing how we view the conflict.

Many of us see the world through an internet filter and that can be dangerous when it comes to forming opinions about major issues such as the conflict in the Middle East.

If you use Facebook, for example, your news is processed through a filter of things you are most likely to "like." It may keep you engaged with the story, but you will only be fed information that agrees with your point of view or that of your friends.

And Facebook isn't the only company that uses these algorithms to filter you news feed.

Eli Pariser, author of "The Filter Bubble," has warned about the dangers of internet customization. He points out that a Google search of a country or conflict will yield completely different results for different users, dependent upon what they have viewed in the past.

Yahoo News also personalizes stories to fit what the company believes is the user's perspective.

Carlton Complex Fire officials say no more donations!

Carlton Complex Fire officials say no more donations!

It turns out there can be too much of a good thing. According to the official Carlton Complex Fire blog, the community has overwhelmed community groups with their donations.

Effective immediately, physical donations of clothing, books, toys and more will no longer be accepted.

Okanogan County resources no longer have the space to store additional donations or the manpower to sort them. All donations currently being sorted are more than enough to cover what's needed – they are being transported to a central location and then distributed to members of the community from there.

If you would still like to offer assistance to victims of the Carlton Complex fire, please consider a cash donation to the Apple Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross or other local charities. You can also donate cash for fire victims at any North Cascades Bank.

Working 4 you: Just how good for you is running?

Working 4 you: Just how good for you is running?

Good news for runners.

A new study shows the benefits of running for your health, but this study says it doesn't matter if you're a 15-minute miler, or an elite marathoner. The benefits are still the same.

According to the study running, even for a few minutes a day, can reduce your risk of death from heart disease compared to those who don't run at all. That study was published this week in the journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Researchers studied some 55,000 adults between the ages of 18 and 100 over a 15 year period. They noted their overall health, if they ran and how long they lived.

Compared to non-runners, investigators found those who ran had a 30% lower risk of death from all causes, and a 45% lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

In fact, runners on average lived three years longer compared to those who did not hit the pavement.

When data was broken down by age, sex, body mass index, smoking and alcohol use, the benefits were still the same. And the speed at which runners ran made little difference.

Quincy hospital facing liquidation over debt

Quincy hospital facing liquidation over debt

Quincy Valley Medical Center in Quincy, Washington is facing some serious financial problems and could be forced to close.

Grant County officials are concerned with the $4 million in debt that the hospital owes the county and is demanding that they pay the balance immediately or face tough action from commissioners.

“I will be highly recommending to the county commissioners that we take immediate action going into January 2015 to not pay any registered warrants that come in over the $2.5 million set if no bond levy is put on the 2014 general election ballot, or if it does not pass on the ballot,” said Grant County Treasurer Darryl Pheasant.

Registered warrants entitle the holder to payment on demand from the county treasurer. In 2008 commissioners agreed to raise the Quincy warrants from $1.8 million to $2.5 million, but the hospital has been averaging a balance of $3.95 million instead. At this time Quincy hospital district warrants are one of the largest budget items for the county, comparable to the budget for the sheriff's office.

Escaped inmate caught in Moses Lake

Escaped inmate caught in Moses Lake

The Grant County Sheriff's Office reports that an inmate escaped from the Grant County jail Sunday morning but was then apprehended in Moses Lake a short time later.

At approximately 10 a.m. Sunday, Jaime D. Hampshire, age 29, escaped from the Grant County Jail as another subject was being released. Hampshire was being held on felony theft charges.

At approximately 12:30 p.m. Sunday, Hampshire was located and apprehended at a residence on Road 4 NE in Moses Lake.