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Tie jobs to tax breaks, voters eye Fast Track, Beautiful Day…

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Friday, March 13, 2015

 


STATE GOVERNMENT

 

aerospace-accountability-front► From Leeham News — Washington State: tie jobs-for-tax breaks like other states do (by aerospace industry analyst Scott Hamilton) — Legislators in Washington State are coming down to the wire on a proposed bill promoted by two key Boeing labor unions to tie job levels to tax breaks. Irrespective of party lines, this is a bill that should advance from committees to the full Legislature and win approval. Gov. Jay Inslee should sign this bill if it reaches his desk.

While one might debate facts and figures and their meaning, one fact is indisputable: Washington approves tax breaks without job guarantees while other states that compete with Washington for Boeing’s business tie jobs-for-tax breaks. Consider this:

  • Washington State grants $11.9 billion in tax breaks, no jobs-for-tax breaks;
  • South Carolina, $900 million in tax breaks, 3,800 jobs required;
  • Missouri, $229 million in tax breaks, 2,000 jobs required;
  • Alabama, $150 million in tax breaks, 2,300 jobs required;
  • South Carolina, $120 million in tax breaks, 2,000 jobs required.

Washington State’s failure to require jobs-for-tax breaks is simply a failure of its fiduciary duty for such fiscal actions. As a Washington resident and taxpayer, it’s time to fix these omissions.

EDITOR’S NOTE — This legislation was scheduled for a hearing this morning at 8 a.m. in the House Finance Committee. Watch it on TVW.

► In today’s Olympian — Some lawmakers reversed stance on No Child Left Behind waiver bill — A bill to tie teacher evaluations to student scores on statewide tests couldn’t pass either chamber of the Legislature last year. But Wednesday, the federally required teacher-evaluation changes cleared the Senate 26-23, after five Democrats and two Republicans switched their votes.

► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Inslee won’t block WSU medical school

► In today’s Spokesman-Review — House panel discusses Inslee’s carbon proposal

► In today’s Olympian — Rumors intensify: Will state GOP Sen. Andy Hill run for governor? — The state Capitol and political types have been a-whisper for some time that state Sen. Andy Hill (R-Redmond) may be considering a 2016 run for governor. Hill hasn’t said he plans to seek statewide office.

highway-construction► From the Int’l Business Times — Prevailing wage laws: Why are they an increasingly popular target for Republican state legislators? — Much like the push for so-called “right-to-work,” the anti-prevailing-wage crusade’s growing appeal results most directly from Republicans’ tightened grip on state legislatures.  Ross Eisenbrey of the Economic Policy Institute said it’s not just about undercutting construction unions. He said that like recent attempts to roll back unemployment insurance and workers’ compensation, and pass right-to-work measures, it’s part of a broader agenda aimed at eliminating long-standing government protections for workers. “That’s clearly a goal, to undermine the unions,” he said. “But it’s on the way to a bigger end goal — to return to a pre-New Deal situation where employers made all the rules.”

EDITOR’S NOTE — In Washington, Senate Republicans sponsored four bills intended to exempt certain cities and projects from prevailing wage laws and to change how they are calculated (so they are lower). All of those bills died without a floor vote after Wednesday’s cutoff.

 


LOCAL

 

► In today’s Seattle Times — Highway 520 bridge worker dies after fall — A construction worker on the new Highway 520 bridge died after suffering life-threatening injuries in a 60-foot fall Thursday afternoon.

► In today’s Olympian — Crowd gathers to support $15 per hour wage in Olympia — An energetic crowd of about 50 people gathered in downtown Olympia on Thursday to rally support for a $15 per hour minimum wage in the city. The rally was organized by Working Washington, a group known for supporting similar causes in SeaTac and Seattle.

col-madore-david► In today’s (Vancouver) Columbian — Madore proposes labor moves — Clark County Councilor David Madore has introduced two labor union-related resolutions that are already drawing controversy before they’ve been scheduled for a council meeting. The first would open the county’s collective bargaining agreements to the public and the second would enact a local right-to-work policy. Madore declined to comment on either resolution, but the Freedom Foundation, a conservative group based in Olympia, is already urging its supporters to support of the resolutions. The Southwest Washington Central Labor Council has condemned the resolutions.

► In today’s Seattle Times — Kirkland elementary student poses ‘biohazard’ risk, union says — A Kirkland special-ed student who needs daily diaper changes has returned to class despite protests by aides who say her contagious C. diff infection creates an unsafe workplace.

 


NATIONAL

 

► From Bloomberg — Striking U.S. oil workers reach national deal with Shell — The United Steelworkers union representing 30,000 U.S. oil workers reached a tentative deal on a four-year contract with Royal Dutch Shell that may end a nationwide strike that has lasted more than a month.

ALSO TODAY at The Stand — USW, Shell reach deal; strike may soon end

wyden-ron► From AFL-CIO Now — Poll shows voters will hold lawmakers accountable for Fast Track vote — A new poll by Public Policy Polling found that half (50%) of all Oregon voters would be less likely to vote for Sen. Ron Wyden in his 2016 reelection if he voted for fast track authority. He is widely believed to be one of the Senate Democrats most likely to work with Republicans and the White House to secure passage of Fast Track and the TPP.

► From The Hill — The next looming funding shutdown: Highway programs — Transportation funding is running on empty, forcing Congress to scramble to meet its next major deadline before the tank runs dry on May 31. Both parties say they want to avoid a repeat of last month’s tense standoff over funding for the Department of Homeland Security.  But the likelihood of an impasse increases with each day that passes without an infrastructure reauthorization bill, and transportation advocates warn that more brinkmanship would be disastrous.

obama-at-walmart► MUST-READ from CNN — Obama, don’t abandon labor unions (by Julian Zeliger) — Unions are under assault, and the movement is looking for help. Democrats, and some Republicans, often talk about needing to deal with the problem of economic inequality. Much of the talk is often vague and offers little in the way to real solutions. Shoring up the strength of unions is one area where the government can help protect jobs for middle class Americans. Without strong unions, the battle against economic inequality and insecurity will never really get started… Democrats need to listen to what the AFL-CIO is saying. They need to push back against President Obama, even if this creates political opportunities for Republicans, so that the party does not abandon what has been at the heart and soul of their agenda.

► From The Onion — Wall Street firm develops new high-speed algorithm capable of performing over 10,000 ethical violations per second — Says John Waldron of Goldman Sachs’ investment banking division:

With this new automated program, we’ll be able to systematically deceive investors, engage in conflicts of interest, and execute thousands of other blatantly unethical dealings in the time it takes to press a button… In the past, if one of our brokers wanted to exploit a questionably legal regulatory loophole or breach the covenant of good faith with an investment client, that would require hours of manually contravening the basic principles of professional integrity. But this innovative system will allow millions of such transgressions to go through every single day. Going forward, I expect this revolutionary program to be the cornerstone of our business.

 


T.G.I.F.

 

► Today, the Entire Staff of The Stand wishes U2 bassist Adam Clayton a happy 55th birthday. This video celebrates today’s weather forecast and the aerospace industry (although it does so at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris). Enjoy!

 


The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.

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