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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2017

As we’ve all noticed this past year, events can speed up and spiral like, well, like a mega-storm. 

This morning, the big local news story was going that Mayor Ed Murray would publicly announce a KeyArena rebuilding deal, to be sent to the City Council. 

As the announcement event was about to begin, just after 11 a.m., it was abruptly canceled. The Seattle Times website had just posted news of a fifth allegation of past sex abuse against Murray. Both candidates to succeed Murray soon called on him to resign, joining those who’d been asking Murray to leave since April.

By 1:07 p.m., Murray issued a statement saying he’d resign, effective today, after months of promising to ride out his term to the bitter end. And such a bitter end it turned out to be.

WEATHER

Sunny with morning clouds for another few days. But rain could show up by the weekend.

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THE (NO LONGER) WALKING ED

While still insisting on his innocence of all past abuse allegations, Ed Murray issued a resignation announcement early Tuesday afternoon. (KIRO-TV) (P-I) (Slog) (Weekly) (KNKX)

At the year’s start, Murray was considered a shoo-in for re-election, with a 60 percent approval rating. In April, the first accusations of long-ago abuse surfaced. Now, “Seattle braces for turmoil.” (David Kroman, Crosscut)

Murray’s fifth accuser is his first cousin (once removed), Joseph Dyer. He claims Murray had regularly molested him for about a year when Dyer was 13, Murray was in his early 20s, and they were both living with Dyer’s mother on Long Island, NY. The abuse only ended, Dyer said, “after a boy in a Catholic group home where Murray worked accused Murray of abuse. According to Dyer, his uncle negotiated to get group-home officials not to pursue charges as long as Murray left." (SeaTimes) (KING) (PubliCola)

What happens next: As of 5 p.m. today, City Council President Bruce Harrell becomes acting mayor for five calendar days. If Harrell decides to stay acting mayor after that time, the council appoints someone to fill Harrell’s council seat. If Harrell goes back to the council, the council picks another of its members. Whether or not the acting mayor gets to return to the council after the next elected mayor takes over (in mid-November instead of the traditional January) remains to be legally clarified. (Slog) (Crosscut)

Among council reactions: Kshama Sawant said Murray had “failed as an elected leader by repeatedly attacking the character of his accusers.” Tim Burgess said the fifth accuser was “the final straw… it just made it unbearable.” (Slog)

George Howland Jr., who’d followed Murray’s career since his Legislative days, now calls him “a fallen giant.”

Knute Berger tracks the rise and fall of “will tarnish the legacy of a man who in many respects was a model mayor and progressive politician”…. “The mayor deserves his day in court, but as evidence against him mounts so too does the scale of the unprecedented private and civic tragedy unfolding in Seattle. Let’s hope, somehow, it leads to healing.”

In a statement released by his attorney, Murray accuser Lloyd Anderson said, “I feel victory, but saddened that it required another victim to come forward for him to resign.” (Slog)

Danni Askini of the Gender Justice League: “To hear survivor after survivor come forward and tell their tales of abuse, and then to watch as the mayor has used his position to belittle, demean and dismiss their accusations and to use his power and his office to really silence survivors has been exceptionally painful and I think is damaging.” (KUOW)

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O GIVE ME A HOME

Back in your regularly-scheduled mayoral election, both candidates call themselves “urbanists” while also feeding at least dog-whistle-level reassurances to single-family NIMBYs. (The C Is For Crank)

At a candidates’ debate far overshadowed by the Murray news, Cary Moon advocated for more tenant protections, while Jenny Durkan generally preferred to promote incentives for landlords and developers. (SeaTimes)

As promised, the city started sweeping the Spokane Street encampment Tuesday morning, encountering a few protesters in the process. (Weekly) (KIRO-FM)

A group of “idealstic leftists” called “Housing for All Seattle” aims to “pressure candidates and city leaders into taking both the affordable housing crisis and homeless peoples’ rights seriously.” (Weekly)  

ARENA OF BATTLE

Lost in all the mayoral news was the topic Murray was going to have talked about Tuesday morning: the KeyArena rebuild. As stated in the “memorandum of understanding,” the project would cost $600 million—including money for traffic and parking improvements, and for relocating tenants of to-be-razed nearby structures (including the Pottery Northwest studio). It would nearly double the facility’s size. Construction could start in October 2018 and be done two years later. It could probably get an NHL tenant quickly, an NBA franchise much later (if ever). (Steve Rudman) (KIRO-FM) (AP)

THE BIG A

Novelist Ryan Boudinot worked for Amazon in two stints. He calls the company’s “HQ2” plan “an opportunity to build redundancies and compete against itself to arrive at the most innovative ideas.” (via GeekWire)

Could Toronto be the “front-runner” for HQ2? It’d instantly give Amazon a heightened “global” status. And it’d give the company more opportunities to import “code warriors” from other lands, in case US immigration policy continues to get more strict. (KING)

Another potential HQ2 site: would you believe Everett (with Bothell)? (KCPQ)

Despite official reassurances that Seattle will remain Amazon’s hometown, some locals still find the HQ2 concept a “threat” to local jobs and the local real-estate boom, and a move that triggers “bitter Boeing memories.” (KIRO-FM) (KUOW)

THE BIG N

The Nordstrom family’s reportedly talking with a private-equity firm, on a deal to take the Nordstrom retail chain “private” by buying out non-family shareholders. (CNBC) (GeekWire)

RUN FOR THE BORDER

As small airlines vie to start seaplane service between Lake Union and Vancouver BC, Microsoft has donated toward a study of potential high-speed rail between the cities. (SeaTimes) (GeekWire)

THE RACE IS ON

The Nooksack tribe reached a settlement with the feds about its long-running controversy, involving the tribal board “disenrolling” hundreds of members. The members whose tribal status was questioned will be allowed to vote on a new board. In return, the tribe will get to reopen its main casino. (SeaTimes)

The environmental group “RedLine Tacoma” said it would change its name to “Redefine Tacoma”. Critics said the old name was too reminiscent of racist real-estate “redlining.” (KNKX)

Hate crimes were way up in the first half of this year, say police reports. (SeaTimes)

POLICING THE POLICE

Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole insists the city’s making “real, measurable success” toward police reform, disputing a federal monitor’s report saying the city still has a long ways to go. (SeaTimes)

The city’s settlement with dismissed officer Cynthia Whitlatch, and the revelation that Charleena Lyles had been shot in the back, “underscored not only the serious internal cultural rot that continues to plague SPD, but why the November election for Seattle’s new mayor is shaping up as critically important.” (Geov Parrish)

The King County Council unanimously approved requiring sheriff’s deputies to attend crisis-intervention and “de-escalation” trainings. (Slog)

AROUND THE GENDER BEND

Washington birth certificates may soon allow an “X” (for “other”) gender identity. (News Tribune)

ECO

The state told King County to pay $361,000 in fines over February’s West Point Treatment Plant shutdown, and to invest $1 million major changes to the plant to make sure it doesn’t happen again. (KIRO-TV) (KOMO)

ROLIE POLIE OLY

Several news orgs are suing the Legislature, over its refusal to publicly release lawmakers’ emails, calendars, and other records. (Slog) (News Tribune)

SPORTS

The Mariners had a big 10-3 win at Texas. Series continues tonight.

TONIGHT

“The Revival of Seattle’s Left” with author Jonathan Rosenblum. (Folio)

Charleena Lyles solidarity and benefit concert. (High Dive)

“Star Trek Beyond” with live score. (Benaroya Hall)

Author Vanessa Grigoriadis on “Sex, Power, and Consent on Campus.” (University Lutheran)

Barbara Johns on “The Hope of Another Spring,” her biography of artist Takuichi Fujii. (Central Library)

“The Authenticity Experiment” author Kate Carroll de Gutes. (Elliott Bay Book Co.)

“USS Indianapolis Live: From the Deep,” special about the Paul Allen-funded expedition to find a sunk WWII naval ship. (KCTS)

TOPS, She-Devils. (Barboza)

The Billy Joe Show. (Parliament)

Public meeting about “safe consumption” sites. (Belltown Community Center)

Uncle Bonsai. (Triple Door)

Maracuja, Arango. (Royal Room)

Las Cafeteras, Edna Vasquez. (Nectar)

“Delightful Obsession: A History of Underground New Zealand Music.” (Pony)

QUOTE-O-THE-DAY

(F. Scott Fitzgerald):

"I don't want to repeat my innocence. I want the pleasure of losing it again."

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