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This Morning's Headlines

State Ban on Alcohol Energy Drinks?

Governor Chris Gregoire will hold a news conference after this morning's state Liquor Control Board meeting on alcoholic energy drinks.  The board is considering a ban on the drinks, like Four Loko, which played a role in sending nine Central Washington University students to a hospital last month after a party, as KPLU reported. 

The makers of Four Loko -- Phusion Projects Inc., of Chicago --say the partygoers may have been drinking other types of alcohol. The drinks are marketed to young adults.

Do you think they should be banned?  Recent studies show the high-dose comination of alcohol and caffeine make fora 'wide awake drunk,' as recently reported by NPR.  One Four Loko contains the alcohol of nearly four beers.

Native Carver's Knife Was Closed - Report

When a Seattle police officer first confronted native carver John T. Williams, he says he saw him holding an open blade. But The Seattle Times cites sources'familiar with the investigation' that the knife found at the scene was closed.  Officer Ian Birk shot and killed Williams on a downtown street in August, claiming the carver refused to drop the knife when ordered to do so.  Williams' family says he was deaf in one ear, and often carried his knife and wood for carving.  A preliminary investigation found the shooting unjustified.

New Leader in Race for Supreme Court

Voters in King County have helped attorney Charlie Wiggins take the lead in his bid to oust controversial  incumbent Justice Richard Sanders, according to the Associated Press. There's still 175,000 ballots left to tally from across the state in the coming days, many of them in King County, where Wiggins margin is 58% to 41%, a margin of 3600 votes.

Warnings of State K-12 Cuts Ahead

At a meeting with school district leaders in Pierce County, legislators are warning they won't be able to protect basic K-12 funding in 2011.  The state is facing a $4.5 billion deficit, and voter's have repealed sales taxes supporting social and human services.  Unversity Place legislator Tami Green tells the News Tribunecoming budget cuts will hit more families.

"But we can't get to $4.5 billion without the middle class feeling this," Green said.

Green and other legislators are asking school leaders to identify larger scale cuts, rather than "selective pruning," to help lawmakers make tough budget decisions next year.