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. He regularly files stories for NPR News. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin was a freelance general assignment reporter at KING–TV, the NBC affiliate in Seattle. He also worked as a freelance education reporter for KPLU–FM, the Tacoma–based NPR station. Austin spent 2001 in Washington, D.C. as a Knight Foundation/American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow. Austin has also worked as a television reporter in Portland, Oregon; Boise, Idaho; Casper, Wyoming; and Bozeman, Montana. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and has a B.A. in Government from Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut.

Over the years Austin has won numerous professional awards for his reporting. He lives in Olympia with his wife Jennifer Huntley and their two children.

Read Austin's blog, "The Washington Ledge: Dispatches From Olympia."

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NPR Story
4:55 pm
Tue March 25, 2014

Washington Senate Panel Approves $30 Per Diem Increase

File photo of the Washington Senate chamber
Lincolnite Wikimedia

Washington state Senators are giving themselves a pay raise. They will get $120 a day in per diem when they are in session -- up from the current $90 a day.

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NPR Story
3:07 pm
Tue March 25, 2014

Washington National Guard Deploys Search Unit, Fatality Recovery Team

An aerial view of the massive landslide in Snohomish County.
Office of the Governor Flickr

Originally published on Wed March 26, 2014 9:34 am

The Washington National Guard has deployed two technical units to help at the scene of the massive landslide in Snohomish County.

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NPR Story
6:17 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Washington's New 24/7 Sobriety Program Runs Into Snags

Commander Jim Rich of the Centralia Police Department displays the breath test machine used for the 24/7 Sobriety pilot program.
Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

It’s been nearly a year since a repeat drunk driver caused a horrific accident in north Seattle.

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NPR Story
3:07 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Washington State Ferries Chief To Resign

David Moseley, the head of Washington State Ferries, with Washington Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond.
WSDOT Flickr

David Moseley, the head of Washington State Ferries, announced Tuesday that he will step down on April 15 after six years on the job.

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NPR Story
2:51 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Energy Secretary Meets With Inslee On Hanford

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee met with Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz on Monday.
Office of the Governor

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says the U.S. Department of Energy is failing to provide him a “comprehensive” Hanford clean-up plan.

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NPR Story
3:20 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Washington Governor 'Surprised' Medical Marijuana Regulation Failed

Governor Jay Inslee speaks with reporters at a news conference following the adjournment of the Washington legislature
Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says he’s surprised and disappointed medical marijuana regulation died in the state legislature this year.

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NPR Story
7:55 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Washington Legislature Adjourns With No Action On Medical Marijuana, Gas Tax

The floor of the Washington Senate on the last night of the 60-day session
Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 3:17 pm

The Washington legislature adjourned its 60-day session just before midnight Thursday night.

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NPR Story
2:38 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Washington Legislature Strikes Budget Deal

Colin Fogarty Northwest News Network

In a new budget deal, Washington public schools will get nearly an additional $60 million, but teachers will not get a cost of living raise this year.

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NPR Story
3:43 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Facing Ethics Charge, Washington Lt. Gov. Wants Legal Defense Fund

Washington Lieutenant Governor Brad Owen
State of Washington

In the 1990s an embattled President Clinton created a legal defense fund. Now, four-term Washington Lt. Gov. Brad Owen wants all state elected officials to have that option.

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NPR Story
5:12 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Lobbyist-Paid Meals Legislation Appears To Die In Washington Statehouse

Robert S. Donovan Flickr

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:15 pm

It looks like Washington lawmakers may adjourn their 60-day legislative session without addressing the issue of lobbyist-paid entertainment.

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