Thursday, January 28, 2016
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Boeing workforce in Everett to shrink during 777X transition — Boeing’s decision to make fewer of its biggest airplanes in the next few years could mean fewer jobs, too, at the company’s plant in Everett, a spokesman confirmed on Wednesday. The company has said it plans to cut production rates for the 747 this year and for the classic 777 in 2017. As a result, “we expect some impact on employment and will do our best to mitigate that by placing employees in other jobs across Boeing. We are still studying how many roles may be impacted,” spokesman Doug Alder said.
► In the P.S. Business Journal — Boeing CEO talks up engineering union contract extension, promises respect (subscribers only) — Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said Wednesday he hopes engineers and technical workers will approve the proposed contract extension.
► In the PSBJ — Boeing reveals plan to keep the 747 alive — CEO Dennis Muilenburg laid out the Boeing strategy for the struggling 747 jet on Wednesday.
► From KUOW — Washington schools in crisis mode over teacher shortage — The Washington State Legislature has been trying to fix our education system for years. This year, they’ve got a new challenge to deal with: a teacher shortage. According to a survey from the state’s Office of Superintendent Public Instruction, 58 percent of elementary school principals say they are in crisis mode trying to find qualified substitute teachers.
► In today’s Seattle Times — The Legislature, school funding and Washington’s economy (by Jon Talton) — A contempt of court order and fines don’t light a fire under Washington lawmakers to improve education outlays. What about economic consequences from inaction?
► From AP — Senate panel hears debate over transgender bathroom rule — A bill sponsored by Sen. Doug Ericksen (R-Bellingham) that would eliminate Washington’s new rule allowing transgender people to use bathrooms and locker rooms in public buildings consistent with their gender identity drew an overflow crowd and heartfelt testimony to a Senate committee hearing Wednesday.
ALSO at The Stand — WSLC opposes bills discriminating against transgender people
► In today’s Seattle Times — Clarify your military record or resign, lawmaker tells state Rep. Hunt — Pressure is mounting on state Rep. Graham Hunt to clear up questions over his military record — or resign. House Minority Leader Dan Kristiansen (R-Snohomish) said he has told Hunt (R-Orting) to produce proof he did not knowingly exaggerate his military service.
► In today’s Tri-City Herald — Klippert bill would restrict ferry flags after gay pride flag flown — If state Rep. Brad Klippert (R-Kennewick) has his way, only the American and Washington state flags and maritime signal flags will fly over state ferries. He has introduced a bill that would end the state ferry system’s practice of occasionally flying other flags in response to a rainbow-striped flag symbolizing gay pride. The ferry system had been asked to fly the flag on vessels that serve Seattle for the city’s Pride weekend. It is one of the city’s largest community events, and the agency agreed. “I have no problem with the Seahawks flag,” Klippert told the Herald on Wednesday. “People across all policy beliefs support our Seahawks, but that is not true for gay pride flags.”
► In the Olympian — Lawmakers should address gender inequity (by ) — Stand with women or stand in the way: Reproductive and economic justice are not mutually exclusive; women need both control over their bodies and fair economic opportunity to have equity. We stand with women. It is time for the Legislature to do the same.
► In today’s Seattle Times — A faculty union would keep UW a top-tier research university (by three UW professors) — UW is becoming an institution with a small cohort of competitively-paid elites and an overwhelming majority of faculty struggling to reconcile escalating teaching and service loads with shrinking resources… We strongly feel unionization offers the best prospect to ensure UW remains a top-tier research university within reach for our state’s top high-school graduates.
► In the P.S. Business Journal — Washington state adds construction jobs — The AGC said the state added 9,900 jobs last year, a 5.9 percent gain. There are more than 100 active construction projects in the greater downtown Seattle area alone, meaning that the construction industry is helping power the broader Puget Sound economy.
► From KUOW — Seattle cracks down on employers over minimum wage law — About 150 workers in Seattle received settlement money in the past year because their employer broke the minimum wage law.
► In today’s Columbian — New Washougal schools teacher contract includes pay increase — The new two-year contract includes a 5.4 percent pay increase through the next two years along with a state-funded 4.8 percent cost of living adjustment for a total increase of 10.2 percent.
► In today’s AFL-CIO Now — Where are the jobs? New reports show TPP fails workers — The Obama administration, as part of its full-throated defense of the deal, is touting a new report that claims the TPP will increase exports and raise wages. More on that specious claim in a minute. But the kicker in this report is that the TPP won’t add jobs, despite job creation being central to the Obama administration’s and big business supporters’ argument in support of the deal. In fact, the report states it will lead to “job churning” from manufacturing to service sector jobs.
► In The Atlantic — The TPP’s uneven attempt at labor protection — The agreement puts pressure on some countries, such as Vietnam and Malaysia, to improve worker’s rights. But does the TPP really change anything in member countries such as Vietnam, Brunei, and Mexico, where worker abuses are rampant? No.
► From Reuters — Most Americans support Obama’s contested immigration plan, poll finds — The poll shows 61% of Americans support the plan to relax immigration policy for some undocumented people when it is described in general terms without using Obama’s name, including 42% of Republicans. Half of Republicans opposed the idea. But when the same plan was described as being an executive action taken by Obama, support fell to 54% overall, with only 31% of Republicans supporting it and 62% opposing the measures.
► In today’s NY Times — The need for a tax on financial trading (editorial) — Wall Street won’t like it, but a transaction tax on the trading of stocks, bonds and derivatives would serve the public.
► From Bloomberg — Iowa fast-food workers seeking $15 wage to strike ahead of Republican debate — On the day of the final Republican debate before the pivotal Iowa caucus, fast-food workers will be staging their first-ever strike in the state, demanding a $15-per-hour minimum wage and union rights. “Forty-eight percent of workers in Iowa are paid less than $15 an hour,” Kendall Fells, national organizing director of the Fight for $15 movement, told Bloomberg Politics. “That’s one of the highest shares in any of the country, so it’s an ideal place to be organizing.”
► From The Hill — Sanders campaign suspicious of Microsoft’s role in Iowa caucuses — Bernie Sanders’s campaign is questioning Microsoft’s involvement in the Iowa caucuses next week, asking why Microsoft is providing technology for Monday’s crucial voting contest.
► From CNN Money — Lyft agrees to $12.25 million driver lawsuit settlement — Drivers sued Lyft claiming they were misclassified as independent contractors instead of employees, and that they were entitled to benefits like expense reimbursement and overtime. Though they are still independent contractors under the proposed agreement, Lyft drivers will gain some new benefits.
► In the Int’l Business Times — Cussing coal miners face off against Murray Energy, with help from the feds — Some of the older guys at the Marion County Coal Mine in Metz, West Virginia, have a special greeting when they pass each other underground, one of their co-workers recently testified in court. “Good morning is ‘F— you,” the colleague said. “It’s, ‘F— you. F— no. F— you’.” Like many workers in stressful and dangerous jobs, coal miners are known for their salty language. Now, a couple of miners at the Marion County Mine are hoping it doesn’t cost them their jobs — and the federal government has their back.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.