Tuesday, October 2, 2012
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — SPEEA rejects Boeing offer by 96% — Company and union representatives will return to negotiations Tuesday after engineers and technical workers overwhelmingly rejected the company’s contract offer during a 10-day voting period that ended Monday at 5 p.m. Prior to the vote, Boeing CEO Jim McNerney told Reuters that he believes the company will reach a resolution with the union over the next “few weeks.”
► In today’s Seattle Times — SPEEA rejects Boeing contract, heads back into talks — Speaking to Times editorial board last week, Boeing engineering leader Mike Delaney warned that if the company is forced to give local workers higher compensation and benefits than they would earn in other markets, Boeing will slowly but inevitably move engineering work from the Puget Sound region.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Boeing management doesn’t sound like it’s learned its lesson about threatening to retaliate against unionized employees amid contract negotiations.
► In today’s Seattle Times — First 787 flight to arrive at SeaTac doesn’t leave — A day of celebration for the 787 Dreamliner turned into a public-relations disaster Monday for All Nippon Airways of Japan and for Boeing. The first of the jets to fly into SeaTac Airport in regular passenger service was grounded after arrival due to a maintenance issue, leaving ANA’s Tokyo-bound return flight passengers stranded.
► At KING5.com — Inslee maintains lead over McKenna — A new KING 5 poll shows that Democrat Jay Inslee continues to lead the race for governor over Republican Rob McKenna, now with a six-point advantage. Respondents said they see Inslee as the more “likeable” candidate by a 14-point margin.
► In the Kitsap Business Journal — State should move forward with Basic Health Program (editorial) — Decisions made now will set the course for the future of health care in Washington state. Any hurdles must be addressed with adequate attention and resources, so that we can move forward with full implementation of health care reform. Washington state should continue following the clear policy direction to move forward with Federal Basic Health Option implementation as laid out by the Legislature last session.
► From AP — State employee contract negotiations continue — Neither side has declared an impasse.
► In the Oregonian — Dock workers walk off job to protest McEllrath conviction — Longshoremen walked off the job in Portland and other West Coast ports in protest Friday after ILWU President Robert McEllrath was found guilty of obstructing a train last year during a protest in Longview.
► In the Daily News — 2 Port of Longview workers protest ILWU conviction with 1-hour walkout — McEllrath was sentenced to one day in jail and ordered to pay $543 for leading hundreds of union supporters in blocking a grain train headed into the EGT grain terminal at the Port of Longview in Sept. 7, 2011.
► In today’s Kitsap Sun — Bainbridge begins budget talks by looking at layoffs— The proposed city budget for 2013 would lay off two planning employees and trim hours from the police department, with a total of 4.5 full-time equivalent positions.
► From AP — Judge halts enforcement of Penn. Voter ID for election— A judge is postponing Pennsylvania’s tough new voter identification requirement, ordering that it not be enforced in the presidential election. Tuesday’s ruling comes just five weeks before the election. An appeal is possible. The 6-month-old law requires each voter to show a valid photo ID.
► In today’s NY Times — Offshore tactics helped increase Romney’s wealth — Offshore arrangements made through Mitt Romney’s former company, Bain Capital, were part of tax-avoidance strategies that have enhanced his income.
► In today’s NY Times — Paul Ryan’s tax evasion — “It would take me too long to go through all of the math,” Ryan told Chris Wallace, who made an earnest but futile attempt to pin down Ryan. That’s about the same level of respect for the public’s intelligence that Romney paid last month on Meet the Press, when he also refused to name a single loophole he would close.
► In today’s Washington Post — Paul Ryan’s budget flimflam (editorial) — Ryan wants to tell you about the wonders of the 20% cut in tax rates that he and running mate Mitt Romney propose. He doesn’t want to tell you how much it will cost. Lowering tax rates is the Republican priority, deficits be damned.
► From AP — CenturyLink workers in 13 states authorize strike — CenturyLink workers in 13 states in the West and Midwest are authorizing a strike, if union leaders and the telecommunications company can’t reach a contract agreement. (Workers protested outside the company’s regional HQ in Seattle on Sept. 12.)
► In today’s NY Times — Distress deepening, USPS defaults on $5.6 billion benefits payment — The agency had warned Congress for months that it would not be able to make the payments into the fund for its future retiree health benefits. The payments are required by a 2006 law and do not affect current retiree benefits.
ALSO at The Stand — USPS challenges are political, not financial
► In the NY Times — California is latest stage in battle over unions — The battle to curb labor’s political clout has moved from Wisconsin to California, where wealthy conservatives are championing a ballot measure that would bar unions from donating to candidates. Labor leaders describe it as the starkest threat they have faced in a year of nationwide challenges to diminish their once-formidable power.
► In today’s NY Times — Senate leaders at work on plan to avert ‘fiscal cliff’ — Senate Democrats and Republicans remain far apart on the details, and House Republicans continue to resist any discussion of tax increases. But lawmakers and aides say that a bipartisan group of senators is coalescing around an ambitious three-step process to avert a series of automatic tax increases and deep spending cuts.
► From Bloomberg — Top 1% got 93% of income growth as rich-poor gap widened in U.S. — The 1.2 million households whose incomes put them in the top 1% of the U.S. saw their earnings increase 5.5% last year, according to new Census Bureau figures. Earnings fell 1.7% for the 96 million households in the bottom 80% — those that made less than $101,583.
► In today’s NY Times — U.S. advises states to expand Medicaid or risk losing federal money — But at the same time, federal health officials have also told states that if they choose to expand Medicaid, they are free to reverse the decision at any time.
► From Reuters — Chicago teachers vote whether to ratify deal that ended strike — The Chicago Teachers Union has urged its 29,000 members to ratify the proposed contract, which calls for an average 17.6% pay raise for teachers over four years as well as some benefit improvements.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 9 a.m.