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This Week in Seattle is your weekly dispatch of need-to-know news from the Emerald City. (BigStock Image)

SPD shuts down Twitch channel amid backlash over Charleena Lyles discussion

Seattle PD public affairs
Members of the Seattle Police Department public affairs office, from left, Det. Patrick

The Seattle Police Department has taken down its Twitch channel, FuzzFeed206, after a controversial broadcast this week that centered on the fatal shooting of pregnant mother of four Charleena Lyles. Until now, SPD has hosted a weekly broadcast in which officers play the first-person shooting game “Destiny” while discussing law enforcement issues. The channel was part of SPD’s effort to reach the new cohorts of the Seattle community. This week’s episode struck some as “very strange” and “tone deaf.” The officer who championed FuzzFeed206 said “it just seemed really phony to not talk about the most significant and certainly one of the most tragic events in our city in years,” but also conceded, “I wouldn’t have done the stream knowing that it caused a lot of hurt.” [GeekWire, The Stranger]


Durkan and McGinn emerge as frontrunners in mayoral race

Some see Jenny Durkan and Mike McGinn as frontrunners but anything could happen in this race. (Photos via JennyForSeattle.com, GeekWire)

Mayoral candidates Jenny Durkan and Mike McGinn lead a new poll from KING 5 and KUOW but the contest is still hotly contested. McGinn has support from 19 percent of likely voters polled, and 14 percent said they plan to vote for Durkan. With 38 percent of respondents identifying as undecided, it’s still possible that one of the other 19 candidates will push ahead by the Aug. 1 primary. KING 5 and KUOW conducted the poll to narrow down candidates for a July 17 debate that will be co-hosted by GeekWire and Seattle City Club. Meanwhile, Mayor Ed Murray is doing some polling of his own to determine whether he should re-enter the race as a write-in candidate, now that a sexual abuse lawsuit against him has been dropped. [KING 5]


Uber launches in-app tipping in Seattle

Uber driver Mike Livingstone. (GeekWire Photo / Taylor Soper)

Well, this is a change of direction. Uber has broken with its longstanding practice and implemented an option to tip drivers in Seattle, Minneapolis, and Houston. It’s part of a new initiative called the 180-day commitment, during which Uber says it will be “making meaningful changes and improvements” for drivers. The changes come amid a series of scandals that led CEO Travis Kalanick to resign this week. Separately, Uber is offering on-demand drag performances in celebration of Seattle Pride this weekend. [GeekWire]

Soon, landlords will be legally required to provide voter registration info to tenants

(Bigstock Photo).

The city council wants more Seattle renters to vote. This week, council members approved a law that requires landlords to provide voter registration info to new tenants, hoping to narrow the voting gap between the city’s homeowners and renters. The law is a response to 2014 U.S. Census data, which revealed only 21 percent of renters who lived in their homes for less than a year voted. In contrast, 41 percent of renters who lived in the same home for more than five years voted. The voter registration law will take effect 30 days after Mayor Murray signs it. [Seattle Met]

Mayor celebrates success of $15 minimum wage on 3-year anniversary

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray. (GeekWire Photo / Monica Nickelsburg)

It’s been three years since Seattle passed an ordinance to begin moving toward a $15 minimum wage, and Mayor Murray is calling it a slam dunk. He touted the success of the program on a visit to Broadcast Coffee Roasters, Central Co-Op, and Molly Moon’s, where he discussed the impact of the minimum wage with local business owners. Murray asked the University of California Berkeley to study the effects of the law over the last three years and cited the report saying, “Seattle’s minimum wage ordinance has raised wages for low-paid workers, without any negative impact on employment,” in a press release this week. But not everyone is as bullish about the new minimum wage — or the Berkeley study. Michael Saltsman, who leads a labor policy think tank in D.C., says the true impacts of the $15 minimum wage are more complicated than Murray lets on. [Murray.Seattle.Gov, Forbes]

The ‘Mental Floss’ challenge: How well do you know Seattle?

Seattle Pike Place Market clock
Pike Place Market is one-of-a-kind. (Photo by Erik Stuhaug / Seattle.gov Imagebank)

The folks over at “Mental Floss” compiled a comprehensive list of Seattle trivia this week. Among the 25 fun facts: Seattle was first named “New York.” Pike Place Market started because of overpriced onions — and is the oldest continually operating farmer’s market in America. Dogs outnumber children in this town. And our progressive city was the first in the U.S. to elect a female mayor (though, ahem, we haven’t had one since). [Mental Floss]

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