Austin Jenkins

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia." Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut. His reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists. Austin is the recipient of the 2016 Excellence in Journalism Award from the Washington State Association for Justice.

More than two dozen former federal prosecutors from western Washington are pushing back against new guidance from the Trump administration.

Washington’s 30-day special session of the legislature ends Tuesday. But there’s still no sign of a budget deal or a plan to fully fund education. That means Gov. Jay Inslee is expected to call a second overtime session.

On January 25, 1997, Cecil Emile Davis, a “violent offender” on state supervision, broke into the Tacoma home of 65-year-old Yoshiko Couch. Once inside he raped and beat her and then suffocated her by holding a rag soaked in cleaning solvents over her mouth.

Davis was later convicted of aggravated first degree murder and sentenced to death.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee will spend the next few days focused on trade with Canada and Mexico. Thursday he will meet in Seattle with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. After that Inslee leaves on a trade mission to Mexico.

A trio of measures Gov. Jay Inslee will sign into law Tuesday aims to make roads in Washington state safer. They include a new ban on using electronics behind the wheel.

Monday marks the start of candidate filing week in Washington state. It’s the week when people running for public office must file with the secretary of state’s office. But one political contest is already underway in a big way.

On Saturday a former Washington state prison inmate will graduate magna cum laude from Seattle University School of Law. But her criminal record may prevent her from practicing law as a licensed attorney.

Gun dealers in Washington state will soon be required to report when someone tries to buy a gun and fails a background check. Gov. Jay Inslee signed that requirement into law Wednesday as part of a crackdown on prohibited gun buyers. 


The halfway mark has come and gone in Washington’s 30-day special session of the legislature. But there’s still no deal on a budget or a school funding solution.

The Washington State Patrol has agreed to a $15 million settlement in a class action lawsuit over the hiring and promotion of military veterans. The case involves troopers and trooper applicants who did not receive preference points for their service in the military as mandated by state law.

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