GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! I’m pleased to report that we’re in for more sunshine today, with a high of 72 degrees. Hell. Yes. While you’re soaking up the sunshine 🌞, soak up these headlines. 🥁

 
 
 
 
 
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In LOCAL NEWS:

  • The suspect accused of fatally stabbing a MAX train passenger last Friday told police he heard voices and thought the victim wanted to kill him. Shondel Larkin, 51, said he thought the victim, Michael Brady, was talking about him through an earbud and colluding to either kill him or have him killed. Larkin said he hadn’t taken medication for his mental health condition since January. Brady was stabbed to death and died at the scene of the 82nd Avenue transit center.
  • Multnomah County says it’s making progress in lengthy mediation sessions with ambulance company American Medical Response. The county says it’s trying to find middle ground with AMR to improve abysmally slow ambulance response times. The county contracts with AMR and requires the company to provide a two-person ambulance response to every call. The terms of the contract allow Multnomah County to fine AMR for poor performance. In November, the county fined AMR more than $51,000 for “failing to arrive at 911 calls in the required time.”
  • Last week we told you about a family that got a $17,000 water bill, despite no detected leaks in their home. The Portland Water Bureau now says the household unknowingly used more than 600,000 gallons of water, likely due to a burst pipe that was left exposed after demolition work to a structure behind the home. The water bureau says it will adjust the bill and likely charge the family based on their water usage during the same time frame last year. Yay for that family getting a break. Boo for all that wasted water. 
  • In cooler news, apparently a local clothing company produced the tracksuits worn by Ted Lasso cast members at PEOPLE’s Post Screen Actors Guild Awards Gala (AKA the SAG Awards afterparty) in February. KOIN reports Portland Garment Factory manufactured the suits, which were designed by Nike. Can you imagine Hannah Waddingham wearing something you made? I’d faint.

In NATIONAL/WORLD NEWS:

  • Florida’s Supreme Court ruled yesterday that the state’s 15-week abortion ban can take effect. That ruling paved the way for a law passed in 2022 that restricts abortion to just six weeks–that’s long before most women know they’re pregnant. The big caveat here is that the same court also narrowly ruled that voters will be able to decide a constitutional amendment that would prohibit any abortion restrictions “before viability or when necessary to protect the patient's health.” November is gonna be a doozy.
  • In other news, it turns out your incognito mode searches on Google were never really completely private. In a settlement agreement, Google will now have to erase data it scraped from millions of users who assumed they were browsing the web sans Big Brother, or their boss, or spouse, or the thousands of companies waiting to build a profile of all of us for advertising purposes.
  • World Central Kitchen, an international charity providing food aid to Gaza, says it will pause its operations after Israeli airstrikes killed seven of its workers in Gaza. NPR reports “despite organizing travel with the Israeli military, the convoy was hit as it was leaving a warehouse in Deir al-Balah in central Gaza.” The news comes as Israel’s government said it will block the Al Jazeera news network from broadcasting there.
  • And in case you needed a reminder of how good we have it on the west coast right now, the southeast and parts of the midwest are about to get overtaken by what some are calling “cicada-geddon.” Cicadas–those big, bizarre, winged insects that make a loud buzzing sound as they zip past, are expected to descend on areas of Georgia and Illinois in numbers not seen in over 200 years.