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Regional Correspondent, Northwest News Network

Tom Banse

Tom Banse is a regional correspondent for the Northwest News Network, covering business, environment, public policy, human interest and national news across the Northwest.

Tom has covered state government and the Washington Legislature for more than a decade. He got his start in radio at a public radio station in southern Minnesota, WCAL.

Reared in Seattle, Tom graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota with a degree in American Studies.

Tom enjoys exploring the Olympic Peninsula backcountry and cooking dinner with his wife and friends.

Contact Tom Banse

Recent Articles

News | local

Washington Liquor Privatization Drives Sales To Oregon, Idaho

Northwest News Network | Feb. 8, 2016 5:45 p.m.

The privatization of retail liquor sales in Washington state has delivered a sustained boost to the state liquor divisions in neighboring Idaho and Oregon.

local | Environment

Washington State Lawmakers Want To Fight Fire With Fire More Often

Northwest News Network | Feb. 3, 2016 7 p.m.

A few short months from now, federal and state foresters around the West will purposely set controlled burns to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfires later.

Politics | local | Pacific Ocean | Environment | Will We Be Ready For The Megaquake In Oregon?

Earthquake Early Warning System Coming To West Coast

Northwest News Network | Feb. 2, 2016 3:56 p.m.

Federal agencies and university scientists are making progress on the deployment of an earthquake early warning system for the West Coast.

News | local

Looking For A Middle Way On Raising Minimum Wage

Northwest News Network | Feb. 1, 2016 5:41 p.m.

Business | News | local

Is This The End Of Aluminum Smelting In The Northwest?

Northwest News Network | Jan. 31, 2016 2 p.m.

Once upon a time, the Northwest was home to 10 massive aluminum smelters. As of today, just one still operates.

Business | News | local

Virtual Currency Meets Wariness As It Plugs Into Cheap Columbia River Power

Northwest News Network | Jan. 29, 2016 5:22 p.m.

One of the Northwest's selling points is its cheap hydropower.

News | Politics | local

Modest State Income Tax Cut Teed Up In Idaho Legislature

Northwest News Network | Jan. 26, 2016 2:31 p.m.

A panel of the Idaho House of Representatives voted Tuesday to add a state income tax cut to the legislative session agenda.

News | Politics | local

Washington Lawmakers Propose To Cuff Police Ticket Quotas

Northwest News Network | Jan. 25, 2016 4:08 p.m.

Police agencies in Washington state would not be allowed to rate officers by how many traffic tickets they hand out under a proposal put forward by a former Spokane police officer.

Education | News | Politics | local

College Affordability In The Spotlight In Boise, Olympia

Northwest News Network | Jan. 24, 2016 8:15 a.m.

Students and parents with kids soon heading to a state college or university have reason to pay attention to the Washington and Idaho legislatures this coming month.

Fish & Wildlife | local | Flora and Fauna | Environment

Snowshoe Hares Predated For Wearing White Out Of Season

Northwest News Network | Jan. 22, 2016 8:31 a.m.

A fashion faux pas could be the worst consequence if you wear the wrong color for the season. But a new scientific paper finds much higher stakes when it comes to mismatched coat colors in the animal world.

Business | News | local

Direct Subsidy To Preserve Aluminum Smelter Jobs Ruled Out

Northwest News Network | Jan. 15, 2016 3:25 p.m.

Washington's governor is ruling out a direct public subsidy to save the jobs of hundreds of workers at the Northwest's last operational aluminum smelters.

News | local

Proposed Summertime Ban On Fireworks Catches Heat

Northwest News Network | Jan. 14, 2016 6:28 p.m. | Olympia, Washington

A proposed summertime ban on consumer fireworks is firing people up at the Washington state Capitol.

News | local

Idaho Moves To Join Neighboring States In Banning Powdered Alcohol

Northwest News Network | Jan. 13, 2016 2:41 p.m.

The state of Idaho is moving to ban powdered alcohol before it ever appears on store shelves. Oregon and Washington did the same last year.

News | Politics | local

Washington House Democrats Begin Examining Light Pollution

Northwest News Network | Jan. 12, 2016 4:17 p.m.

Some Democrats in the Washington House want the state to take a look at what it could do to cut back on light pollution.

News | Politics | local

Otter Focuses On Education In Idaho State Of State Address

Northwest News Network | Jan. 11, 2016 5:45 p.m.

Education funding was front and center Monday as the Idaho and Washington state legislatures convened for their 2016 sessions.

News | NW Life | local

Regular Driver's License OK At Airports For At Least Two More Years

Northwest News Network | Jan. 8, 2016 4:17 p.m.

The Department of Homeland Security Friday extended its deadline for non-compliant states to raise ID card standards.

News | Land use | local | An Armed Occupation In Eastern Oregon

Idaho Governor Touts 'Rule Of Law' In First Comments On Oregon Militants

Northwest News Network | Jan. 7, 2016 3:05 p.m.

Idaho Gov. C. L. "Butch" Otter spoke forcefully about observing the “rule of law” in his first comments on the armed protesters in adjacent eastern Oregon.

News | Nation | local

Idaho Governor Reassured By Feds On Refugee Vetting

Northwest News Network | Jan. 7, 2016 2:41 p.m.

Idaho Gov. C. L. "Butch" Otter said he has received reassurances from the federal government about the adequacy of vetting of refugees from the war-torn Middle East.

Business | News | Economy | local

Haggen Meltdown Creates Grocery Monopoly In Some Northwest Cities

Northwest News Network | Jan. 5, 2016 8 a.m.

The fast expansion and spectacular meltdown of the Haggen grocery chain has left thousands of people in the Northwest with fewer places to buy their groceries.


What's Driving Health Insurance Premium Increases In The New Year?

Northwest News Network | Dec. 30, 2015 6:08 p.m.

With the start of a new year comes an increase in health care costs for many local employers and workers. The average increase for 2016 health plan...