Hanford cuts, privatization poison, white-fare

Tuesday, June 6, 2017




► In today’s Tri-City Herald — Proposed Hanford budget would cut an estimated 700 jobs — More than 700 jobs would be lost at the Hanford nuclear reservation next year if the budget requested by the Trump administration is enacted as proposed, the Tri-City Development Council estimated. The Hanford jobs would be in addition to more than 1,000 jobs previously estimated to be cut at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland under the administration’s proposal.

► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Labor Department to spend $1.6M to help laid-off Boeing workers — Boeing has issued more than 1,000 layoff notices so far this year, and more are expected in the coming months. The Labor Department plans to use the money to pay for job training and other services, and to open a job service center in Lynnwood for affected Boeing workers. The center will offer career services, apprenticeship information sessions and short-term skills workshops.

► In today’s (Longview) Daily News — Labor talks heat up for clinic workers — Union pickets (IAM Local 536) lined the street outside the Cowlitz County Family Health Center on Monday afternoon in a show of support for clinic employees who have been engaged in contract negotiations with the center since November.

► From AP — Logging operations critical to forest restoration — A new collaborative approach hopes to show responsible environmental stewardship can boost the health of Washington’s forests and the state’s regional economies.




► From KNKX — As budget talks crawl, a Washington State Senate race accelerates — It’s only June in an off-election year, but yard signs are up and candidates are knocking on doors in Washington’s 45th legislative district. It’s just one race, but the outcome could decide who controls the Washington state Senate.

► In today’s News Tribune — If you’re going to talk about Evergreen, at least get your facts straight (by Matt Driscoll) — Almost everything you’ve read so far about what went down fails to do justice to what actually happened, and, importantly, how we got there. Pundits and opinion writers, including the one penning this column, have an important role to play in all of this: To get it right, in all its complexity and nuance. Getting it wrong, or reducing it to base simplicities, has the potential to be even more dangerous than what we’ve seen on viral videos posted to YouTube. Need proof? Look no farther than the phoned-in threat that closed Evergreen last week.




► From The Hill — Dems lose appetite for deal with Trump on infrastructure — Major elements of President Trump’s infrastructure initiative are facing staunch opposition from Democrats, increasing the likelihood that Republicans will have to go it alone. Trump kicked off his infrastructure campaign Monday by announcing a proposal to separate air traffic control from the federal government — one of the most controversial infrastructure ideas floated by the administration so far, and one that was quickly rejected by Democrats.

► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Selling off air traffic control won’t make skies safer (by Bill Center) — Don’t be fooled by the word “nonprofit” in the proposal. The flying public would foot the bill as the airline industry and other users passed costs along to fare-paying passengers. The proposal will ultimately not save taxpayers a dime and will almost surely cost more than our current approach. Even worse, many smaller regional airports would likely lose air traffic control services under the new arrangement, depriving them of vital commercial and emergency access — a classic case of paying more for less. It will allow our elected leaders to avoid raising taxes, then protest indignantly whenever the air traffic control system falls short.




► In today’s Washington Post — Senate GOP aiming to conclude divisive health-care push — one way or the other — Senate Republican leaders are aiming to conclude their perilous and divisive effort to rewrite the nation’s health-care laws as soon as late this month, giving themselves only weeks to resolve substantial disagreements and raising the possibility that their push will collapse.

► In today’s NY Times — Under Trump, worker protections are viewed with new skepticism — There’s a relaxation in the approach to occupational safety and business is getting a bigger voice, while hard-won victories for safety advocates are being reversed.

► In today’s NY Times — China looks to capitalize on clean energy as U.S. retreats — China, which has a considerable hold on solar and wind businesses, wants to use its technological expertise to help other countries meet their climate goals.

► In today’s Washington Post — EPA chief Scott Pruitt claims that ‘almost 50,000 jobs’ have been gained in coal. He isn’t even close. — The EPA administrator had a shiny new talking point to roll out on the Sunday morning shows as he defended President Trump’s decision to exit the Paris accord on climate change.

► In today’s NY Times — Where are the United States Attorneys? (editorial) — President Trump fired half after the others quit. Yet the law-and-order president hasn’t even nominated a single replacement.

► In today’s Washington Post — ‘I know what Paul Ryan stands for’: Eighth-grader defends refusal to pose with House speaker — It was a small act of defiance: Dozens of eighth-grade students from South Orange Middle School in New Jersey declining to pose for photographs with House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) during a trip to Washington.




► In today’s Washington Post — States with more black people have less generous welfare benefits, study says — A poor family in Vermont, where 94 percent of residents are white, is 20 times more likely to receive welfare than if that same family lived in Louisiana, where nearly a third of residents are black.

► From AP — Justices side with religious hospitals in pension dispute — Religious hospitals don’t have to comply with federal laws protecting pension plans, a unanimous Supreme Court ruled Monday in a case that affects retirement benefits for roughly a million workers nationwide.

► From Bloomberg — More states lock down join employer relationship — To provide certainty about joint employment to employers and to state regulators administering labor laws, states have been passing laws to define joint employment.

► In today’s NY Times — The Silicon Valley billionaires remaking America’s schools — They are influencing what students learn, and how teachers teach — with millions of children serving as de facto beta testers for their ideas.

► In today’s NY Times — Truckers’ message for you: Chill out, stop texting, and have respect — We asked truck drivers what they would say to drivers of four-wheeled vehicles if they got the chance. Responses came in with practical advice about highway safety, fervent pleas to put down those smartphones and requests to be treated with dignity.


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

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