Friday morning's headlines

Jun 10, 2011

Bummer: Mostly cloudy, with a high near 64. Forecast here.

Making headlines around the Northwest:

UW considers 20-percent tuition hike

The very day  Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law legislation giving Washington state’s four-year universities authority to set their own tuition, Washington State University raised it's tuition by 16 percent. Now, the University of Washington is considering boosting its tuition by 20 percent, according to The Seattle Times.

It'll be the second-largest tuition increase in the school's history, the Times reports.  That's a jump in tuition and fees from $8,700 to $10,574. The UW's Board of Regents is expected to make a final decision at its next meeting on June 30.

Other universities are also likely to raise tuition: Western Washington University's board of trustees will vote on a 16 percent increase Friday. Central Washington University and The Evergreen State College are both considering 14 percent increases, and Eastern Washington University plans to raise tuition by 11 percent.

OFFbeat news: Elephant insemination, 'mink' not weasel

The Woodland Park Zoo yesterday performed an artificial insemination procedure on Chai, the zoo’s 32-year-old Asian elephant, according to the neighborhood blog The zoo says the semen used for the procedure was from a 13-year-old bull at Albuquerque Biological Park Zoo. It will be about 15-16 weeks before the zoo can confirm if Chai becomes pregnant from the procedure. The gestation period for elephants is 22 months.

In the strange case of a man accused of assaulting another man in Hoquiam while holding a dead weasel. The attacker told the victim and police that the animal was a marten. Now, Hoquiam Police Chief Jeff Myers reports that the animal actually was a mink. He says martens haven't been seen in the Grays Harbor area for 50 years. Both minks and martens are members of the weasel family. Hoquiam man was apparently looking for his girlfriend Monday night when he took the carcass to the apartment of her former boyfriend.

A Seattle lawyer who was accused of scratching three vehicles with his keys and leaving notes criticizing the drivers' parking skills has pleaded guilty to a reduced charge. The Seattle Times says 63-year-old Ronald Clarke Mattson pleaded guilty Thursday to attempted second-degree malicious mischief, a gross misdemeanor. A Superior Court judge gave him a one-year suspended sentence and 240 hours of community service.

IRS revokes 7,000 Wash. charities tax-exempt status

The Internal Revenue Service has automatically revoked the tax-exempt status for more than 7,000 Washington state charities for failing to file a return or notice with the federal agency for the past three consecutive years, the Puget Sound Business Journal reports. Nationwide, 275,000 charities had their status revoked, according to the IRS.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy reports that mistakes in IRS list cause headaches for some nonprofits.

Best job perk: Paid exotic travel

Some technology companies attract employees with catered lunches, on-site massages and stock options. But Buuteeq — a Seattle startup that just landed $3.5 million – has a secret recruiting weapon in its back pocket. It’s called Trotamundo, reports Seattle's Geekwire.

Join the upstart, and you’ll be encouraged to travel to beautiful hotels and lodges in China, Mexico and Chile … on the company’s dime. The program — which translated to English means “globe trotter” — offers each employee an annual travel stipend of between $2,500 to $5,000 per year.