Wednesday, April 30, 2014
► At IAM751.org — Unions to seek accountability for aerospace tax breaks — Machinists Union District Lodge 751 is pursuing legislation that would hold Washington’s aerospace companies accountable for creating middle-class jobs with the state tax incentives they received last winter.
“We as a state did not agree to $8.7 billion worth of tax breaks for these companies so that they could create minimum-wage manufacturing jobs, and move good-paying engineering jobs out of state,” said District 751 Legislative Director Larry Brown. The union’s District Council on April 22 unanimously approved a motion calling on the Legislature to amend the tax breaks given to Boeing and the rest of the aerospace industry, to make the companies accountable. District 751 and SPEEA, the aerospace engineers’ union, plan to work together with the rest of Washington’s labor unions to draft legislation and get it introduced in Olympia in 2015.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Union wants new conditions put on Boeing’s $8.7B tax break — The Machinists union said Tuesday it will seek legislation to hold Boeing accountable for creating and maintaining middle-class jobs with the state tax incentives the company received last year.
► In today’s Olympian — Lawmakers turn in their homework to court on McCleary school-funding case — The court in January gave the Legislature a deadline of April 30 to submit “a complete plan for fully implementing its program of basic education for each school year between now and the 2017-18 school year.” But lawmakers didn’t agree on any such funding plan during their 60-day session. Their report prepared for the court bows to the fact that there is no year-by-year timeline for adding the money.
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — On school funding, Legislature still has far to go — Washington lawmakers know they didn’t make much progress this year in meeting a Supreme Court order to fully fund public schools. But they’re promising justices they are on the right path and seek their indulgence as lawmakers work toward a “grand agreement” next year to satisfy their wishes.
EDITOR’S NOTE — That sounds too much like “grand bargain” for comfort.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Inslee orders a move toward limits on carbon emissions — Calling the response to climate change “a moral responsibility,” Gov. Jay Inslee on Tuesday appointed a task force to find ways to meet the state’s targets on cutting greenhouse-gas emissions.
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — A plan for carbon pollution (editorial) — On Tuesday, Gov. Jay Inslee signed an executive order to advance his low-carbon, clean-energy agenda. There are no new taxes and no new programs. The rub is it appears a wee process heavy… There’s an agenda — a noble and necessary one — that will involve sacrifice. The process will be deliberative and public, not secret. Now, something meaningful needs to come of it.
WORKER MEMORIAL DAY
► In today’s Olympian — 65 workers statewide lost lives to work-related injury or illness in 2013 — Washington workers who lost their lives to job-related injuries or illnesses in 2013 were honored in a ceremony Tuesday that brought together grieving family members, state officials and representatives of business and labor.
► At PubliCola — WSDOT secretary says ‘small possibility’ tunnel won’t be built — State transportation secretary Lynn Peterson acknowledges that there is a “small possibility” that the deep-bore tunnel in downtown Seattle will never get built. The only scenario in which that might happen, she added, is if the contractor, Seattle Tunnel Partners, and WSDOT discover that “the machine is not going to actually be fixable.”
► At KPLU — King County Council begins tough job of eliminating bus service — King County Council members are proceeding with the unwelcome task of eliminating bus service. Metro already has a plan, but council members have the final say on how to parcel out the cuts in the most logical and equitable way.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Republican right condemns McMorris Rodgers remark on ACA — Comments from U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers that the Affordable Care Act was “probably” here to stay have incited a firestorm of criticism among right-leaning media outlets suggesting surrender by the GOP.
► In The Hill — Harry Reid slates minimum wage vote for today — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Monday set up a long-shot Wednesday vote on a proposal to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.
EDITOR’S NOTE — It’s a long shot not because the majority opposes it. As many as 54 members of the 55-member Senate Democratic caucus to support the procedural vote Wednesday. But Republicans are filibustering, which means a supermajority of 60 senators are needed to overcome the GOP’s procedural obstacle. Republicans REALLY don’t want America’s lowest legal wage to go up. And speaking of things that republicans REALLY don’t want…
► In The Hill — Senate Democrats plan vote to reverse Citizens United decision — Senate Democrats will schedule a vote this year on a constitutional amendment to reform campaign finance as they face tens of millions of dollars worth of attack ads from conservative groups.
► In today’s NY Times — Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin law requiring photo ID at the polls — A federal judge on Tuesday struck down Wisconsin’s law requiring voters to produce state-approved photo identification cards at polling places, advancing a new legal basis — the Voting Rights Act (or what’s left of it) — for similar challenges playing out around the nation.
► At Think Progress — Judge says ‘no rational person could be worried’ about vote fraud — U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman found not just that the law disproportionately deters minorities and low-income individuals from voting; but also that purported instances of voter impersonation are so infrequent, if they exist at all, that “no rational person could be worried about it.” (See photo.)
► In today’s NY Times — Voter ID is the real fraud (editorial) — Supporters of these laws insist they are necessary to prevent fraud at the polls, though such fraud is basically nonexistent. The real point is to deter from the polls significant numbers of Democratic voters, particularly minorities and the poor.
► In today’s Washington Post — Immigration activists turn the tables on Obama (by Dana Milbank) — It’s a shame President Obama was in the Philippines on Monday, because the former Chicago community organizer missed the chance to see his White House being picketed — by a Chicago-based group of community organizers.
► Actor Bob Hoskins, perhaps best known for his role in “(Who Framed) Roger Rabbit,” has died at age 71. The Entire Staff of The Stand™ will always love his brief appearances in the cinematic classic “Brazil.” R.I.P., Bob.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.