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Consumers could see higher liquor prices at restaurants, bars

Consumers could see higher liquor prices at restaurants, bars

The price of alcohol could be going up again, this time in restaurants and bars, the latest change as a result of the privatization of liquor sales in Washington.

This is a going to be a new problem for consumers, but it's one that local businesses have been dealing with for some time.

Come April, customers will be paying up to 15-percent more for alcoholic beverages at restaurants if the Washington State Liquor Control Board moves forward with making restaurants and bars pay the same tax that independent liquor stores are required to dish out.

While this may be another headache for consumers, it's been a problem for independent liquor stores much longer.

Greenacres Liquor Store on East Appleway has been in business for nearly 30 years, but business is not the same as it was before privatization went into effect in 2011. Owner Keith Peterson said before privatization his store was the distribution site for 50 restaurants in the area; after privatization he's down to six.

He said the fallout is due to restaurants going straight to the main distributor to avoid higher prices from independent stores required to pay the tax.

Location change for Moses Lake meeting on recent violence

Location change for Moses Lake meeting on recent violence

The location for the Moses Lake town hall meeting to discuss recent gang violence has been changed to accommodate more people. The meeting, called by Sheriff Tom Jones, will be held at North Elementary on Wednesday, February 26th, rather than at the Grant County Sheriff’s substation.


The meeting was called on Friday, following a drive-by shooting on Thursday. The incident is the fourth shooting in the Larsen Housing area in the last month. Two of those shootings targeted 16-year-old Brandon Mende, who was injured in one shooting and killed in the second.

Grant Co. Sheriff draws line in sand against gangs

Grant Co. Sheriff draws line in sand against gangs

Help is on the way. That's what Grant County Sheriff Tom Jones is telling the community amid a wave of violence in the Larson Housing Area outside of Moses Lake.

Last weekend a teenager was shot and killed. Thursday night there was a drive-by shooting. Now Sheriff Jones is saying, "Enough is enough."

There have been four shootings in the last month in one Moses Lake neighborhood and two of them targeted 16-year-old Brandon Mende. He was injured in the first and, while recovering, was shot and killed.

The Larson Housing Area is the most troubled spot in Grant County according to Jones. After the fourth shooting Thursday night on the 1200 block of Arlington Drive NE. the sheriff, like many residents, are fed up.

"I am no longer putting up with gangs or gang-violent related incidents. I'm also here to tell you, the members of this community, that more help is on the way," he said.

The sheriff plans to establish a stronger presence in the area and tell deputies to pull over suspicious cars.

State pot revenue projections lower than anticipated

State pot revenue projections lower than anticipated

The long-standing question of how much the state can make off of marijuana has been answered and it's much lower than many expected.

Voters were originally told before the election once shops started selling pot the state could make up $1.9 Billion in tax revenue over five years. But now that number is expected to be much lower.

Last year, the Washington State Liquor Control Board hired a marijuana consultant to let us know what to expect and how many people might buy legal weed. In the consultant's thorough report the amount of projected revenue dropped.

The Washington Economic and Revenue Forecast Council released new estimates this week. Instead of $1.9 Billion over five years they say Washington could rake in $586 Million over four years. That money will come from excise, B&O and sales taxes as well as fees.

Most of the money is distributed to programs like drug rehab centers, research on the drug's affect on the state and the liquor control board for regulation.

Authorities arrest teen for Moses Lake murder

Authorities arrest teen for Moses Lake murder

Authorities in Grant County have arrested a suspect in the February 16 fatal shooting of Brandon Mende.

Mende was shot and killed last Sunday morning in the yard of a residence in the 6000 block of Turnkey Road in Moses Lake.

The suspect in Mende's shooting, 17-year-old Michael Meier, was arrested at 425 North Grape Drive Thursday morning.

Members of the Grant County Sheriff's Office, Moses Lake Police Department and U.S. Marshals Service worked together to arrest Meier.

"I want to thank everyone who stepped forward with tips, and also all the witnesses who stepped up to give us the information we needed to make the arrest," Grant County Sheriff Tom Jones said.

Meier is facing a single charge of first-degree murder.

Voter's Pamphlet art contest open for Washington students

Voter's Pamphlet art contest open for Washington students

The Office of the Secretary of State is calling on Washington artists in the 4th & 5th grades to submit designs for the 2014 Voter’s Pamphlet. The winning design will be featured on more than 3.2 million copies of the pamphlet and will be sent to every house in the state during the General Election this fall.

Washtunca students pen bill for state waterfall

Washtunca students pen bill for state waterfall

At the Washtucna School, a civics lesson has taken on a life of its own and is inspiring the small school’s young students. The 30 students in grades 3 & 4 and 5 & 6 have introduced a bill in the legislature and are on a mission to have the Palouse Falls named the official water fall of Washington.


“We started thinking, how can we make this real for the kids,” said 5th & 6th grade teacher Janet Camp. “We started thinking, what do we have to offer?”