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Expanding OT pay, Sanders surge, hot hemisphere…

Tuesday, July 21, 2015




WSLC 2015 Convention► In today’s Seattle Times — Labor group disinvites Inslee over Boeing tensions — Lingering resentment over big Boeing tax breaks led the Washington State Labor Council to cancel a speaking invitation for Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee. “I have enormous respect for the governor and the things he’s trying to do,” said WSLC President Jeff Johnson. He praised Inslee’s work on transportation, climate change and “support of public employees and the common good.” But tensions persist over Inslee’s role in securing Boeing’s record-setting $8.7 billion tax break and his pressure on the Machinists union to vote on a contract that ended workers’ defined-benefit pension plan. “Feelings are pretty raw with a lot of our members, a lot of our unions,” Johnson said. The resentment goes beyond just Boeing-affiliated unions, he added.

ALSO at The Stand — Tefere Gebre to headline WSLC Convention




trumka► From Inside Sources — Raising wages by expanding overtime pay (by Richard Trumka) — You deserve to be fairly compensated for your time, and the only reason you’re not is because of an outdated labor law. President Obama and the Department of Labor have taken an important first step to ensure that millions more workers receive the overtime pay they deserve. By increasing the salary threshold to $50,444 — meaning if you make less than that, you’re guaranteed protection — nearly 5 million more workers will be automatically eligible for overtime. This is a major win for the national Raising Wages Agenda.

► From The Hill — Congressional Dems back Obama on overtime rules — Well over half the Democrats in both chambers signed on to a letter backing the new proposed rules, which the White House rolled out last month. The letter, drafted by Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.), urges Obama not to back down in front of GOP opposition to the overtime rules, and to finalize regulations as soon as possible.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Other members of Congress from Washington who signed Murray’s letter: Sen. Maria Cantwell and Reps. Suzan DelBene, Derek Kilmer, Rick Larsen, Jim McDermott, and Adam Smith.

murray-ryan-budget-front► From Politico — Help wanted: Top negotiators to stave off shutdown — It was an almost unheard-of act of congressional statesmanship by two respected figures in their parties: Paul Ryan, the GOP policy stalwart and vice presidential candidate just a year earlier, and Patty Murray, the veteran Democratic senator known for her no-frills, get-it-done style, pulled Congress back from the brink of a budget disaster. Now, the bipartisan accord they struck two years ago to prevent catastrophic budget cuts is about to expire. And there is no one in sight to step up as the next Ryan-Murray.

► From Metro — Sen. Warren’s schedule bill aims to carve out consistency in work schedule chaos — “Too many hardworking Americans face difficult situations due to erratic employer scheduling, especially women and low-wage workers,” said AFL-CIO Secretary Treasurer Liz Shuler. “By prioritizing fair scheduling as a key component of economic stability, (Sen. Warren’s) Schedules that Work bill will protect the rights and wages of working people.”

► In today’s NY Times —  A Senate bill that makes roads and railroads less safe (editorial) — Legislation that could be considered this week would allow younger interstate truckers and undermine safety on roads and rails in numerous other ways.




► From Politico — Trumka: I’m not trying to slow the Sanders surge — The AFL-CIO leader says his memo last month was a simple reminder that there’s only one endorsement from the group: “The memo just said, before they got out of hand, you know, debate back and forth, talk up a storm. But remember: There’s only one endorsement in a presidential election, and it comes from the national.”

GOP-attacking-veterans► In today’s NY Times — Trump surges to big lead in GOP presidential race — The poll, largely completed before Donald Trump disparaged Sen. John McCain’s war record, showed Trump with nearly twice the backing of his nearest rival.

► In today’s NY Times — Scott Walker proposes shutting Wisconsin Ethics Board — The Government Accountability Board unanimously approved the 2012 election to recall the governor and later authorized an investigation into his recall campaign.

► In the National Journal — Jeb Bush wants to cut automatic raises for federal employees — Jeb Bush on Monday outlined how he would overhaul the federal civil service if he is elected president, including a proposal to transform the pay-raise system for federal employees.




► In today’s Seattle Times — Gravity Payments CEO, who set $70K minimum pay, sued by brother — Lucas Price, co-founder and director of Gravity Payments, accuses his brother, co-founder and CEO Dan Price, of violating Lucas’ rights as minority shareholder and breaching duties and contracts, according to court records.

► In today’s News Tribune — Tacoma, Seattle port container cargoes up 14 percent last month — Shippers diverted more cargo to Northwest Port Alliance docks in June because of less congestion than rival West Coast ports.




lat-port-truckers-strike► In today’s LA Times — Port truckers plan sixth strike against company — Drivers at a trucking company serving the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports plan to walk away from their jobs Tuesday in an ongoing struggle to be deemed employees, a union representative said. The truckers are also demanding wages they say they are owed by their employer, Pacific 9 Transportation, after working as independent contractors rather than company employees.





► From Think Progress — NOAA: Hottest first half of year in Northern Hemisphere by stunning 0.36°F — NOAA’s latest monthly climate report confirms that 2015 will crush previous global temperature records. That’s especially true up here in the northern hemisphere, where the first half of 2015 is a remarkable 0.36°F warmer than the first half of any year since records started being kept 135 years ago.



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