Friday, May 11, 2018
► In today’s Columbian — Stamp Out Hunger campaign hopes to deliver — May is not generally a time of year when people think to donate to the Clark County Food Bank. In fact, that’s the point behind the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive happening Saturday. This is a “strategic time of year” to donate to the food bank because donations from the holiday season are long gone, said Matt Edmonds, communications manager at the food bank. Also, children will soon be out of school for the summer, unable to make use of the federal free- and reduced-price lunch program. Stamp Out Hunger makes filling the food bank’s shelves easy. Place a bag of nonperishable food next to your mailbox by 9 a.m. Saturday and your neighborhood letter carrier will pick it up during their normal mail route. The letter carriers will take whatever pantry staples people are willing to donate. Proteins, such as canned tuna and chicken, peanut butter and beans, are particularly in demand.
ALSO at The Stand — Letter Carriers ‘Stamp Out Hunger’ food drive is May 12
► From The Stranger — A strike is likely as negotiations stall between UW, student employees — Members of UAW 4121, which represents 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students who work as researchers, tutors, graders, teaching assistants, and resident assistants, announced Wednesday night that if they don’t reach a deal with UW, they will strike for one day next Tuesday.
ALSO at The Stand — May 15 strike called at UW
MORE coverage from KNKX.
► From Medium — I’m striking May 15 because of low pay, high rent, and university fees #UWstrike — I will be going on strike on May 15 as a member of UAW Local 4121. Why you might ask? I am withholding my labor because the University of Washington administration fails to value my labor and appropriately compensate me for it.
► From The Stranger — UW Medical Center describes ‘extraordinarily difficult time’ amid potential cuts, closures — Outside in a courtyard on the University of Washington Campus Wednesday, advocates for several threatened medical programs rallied to demand the university protect their workplaces. Inside, at a meeting of the UW Board of Regents, the chief financial officer of the UW Medical Center painted a dire picture of the organization’s budget.
ALSO at The Stand — UW School of Dentistry staff demands budget accountability
► In today’s Seattle Times — Mayor Durkan offers her own, smaller head-tax plan — Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan has her own, smaller proposal for a tax on large employers, and support from four City Council members, she said. That could throw City Hall into deadlock, with the mayor and her council backers set against five council members who have been pushing a larger version to help address Seattle’s homelessness crisis.
► From The Stranger — Another reason Seattle is fighting over a head tax: Jeff Bezos helped make sure we have no income tax — Why don’t we have an income tax? In part, it’s because Jeff Bezos didn’t want us to have one. Back in 2010, Bezos — along with other local tech leaders like Steve Ballmer and Paul Allen — donated big money to ensure the defeat of a statewide initiative to tax just the income of Washington’s wealthiest individuals.
► A special report in today’s Seattle Times — Behind Seattle’s rising pension costs: Past mismanagement adds to taxpayers’ burden — The Seattle City Employees’ Retirement System had one of the worst investment returns of any large public pension over a decade, triggering higher costs for the city and taxpayers. In the years before the financial crisis, Seattle’s retirement system bet on a series of complex investments that backfired, from a local biofuels company to a Cayman Islands hedge fund. Behind the system’s struggles were allegations ranging from mismanagement to misconduct, leaving in their wake rising pension costs increasingly shouldered by the city and taxpayers at more than $100 million a year, a Seattle Times investigation has found.
► In the Peninsula Daily News — Sequim schools may reduce staff starting Tuesday — The Sequim School District’s human resources director says the district will issue non-renewal notices to provisional employees by Tuesday.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Farmworkers should be paid state minimum wage for some tasks, high court says — Farmworkers in Washington who are being paid a piece-work rate must be paid minimum wage for the time they spend doing other tasks, a divided state Supreme Court said Thursday. In response to a question from a federal judge, a bare majority of the court said the state’s minimum wage law plainly requires employers to pay their adult workers at least minimum wage for the hours worked. They can’t average the amount they get from piece-work with a lesser hourly wage for other tasks so that the weekly paycheck totals the amount that would be paid under minimum wage.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Department of Licensing director resigns after controversy over info-sharing with immigration officials — Following revelations in January that the Washington state Department of Licensing was routinely sharing residents’ personal information with immigration-enforcement authorities, some Latino and community groups have been calling for agency director Pat Kohler’s removal. On Thursday, Gov. Jay Inslee announced she is stepping down.
PREVIOUSLY at The Stand — Call Gov. Inslee to urge removal of DOL Director Kohler
► In today’s NY Times — Let them eat Trump steaks (by Paul Krugman) — Trump has reportedly threatened to veto the upcoming farm bill unless it imposes stringent new work requirements on recipients of SNAP — the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, still commonly referred to as food stamps. There’s something fundamentally obscene about this spectacle. Here we have a man who inherited great wealth, then built a business career largely around duping the gullible — whether they were naïve investors in his business ventures left holding the bag when those ventures went bankrupt, or students who wasted time and money on worthless degrees from Trump University. Yet he’s determined to snatch food from the mouths of the truly desperate, because he’s sure that somehow or other they’re getting away with something, having it too easy.
► From The Hill — White House official mocked ‘dying’ McCain at internal meeting — A White House official mocked Sen. John McCain’s brain cancer diagnosis at an internal meeting on Thursday, a day after the Arizona Republican announced his opposition to President Trump’s nominee for CIA director, Gina Haspel. “It doesn’t matter, he’s dying anyway,” Sadler said.
► In today’s Washington Post — Ryan aims to quash GOP-led rebellion trying to force votes on immigration — House Speaker Paul D. Ryan moved Thursday to put down a brewing rebellion in the Republican ranks, saying he wants to put immigration legislation up for a vote later this year as centrist lawmakers threatened to take that decision out of his hands.
► From Bloomberg — Congress needs notice of NAFTA deal by next week, Ryan says — The House speaker says he needs notice of a NAFTA deal by May 17 if the current Congress is going to be able to vote on it.
► In today’s NY Times — Trump to drop his call for Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices — President Trump will lay out on Friday a broad strategy to reduce prescription drug prices, but in a break from one of his most popular campaign promises, he will not call for Medicare to negotiate lower prices with drug manufacturers.
► From Reuters — Trump plan for drug prices seen largely sparing industry — As U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to deliver a long-anticipated speech on Friday on curbing prescription drug costs, health industry insiders expect little in the way of policies that would hurt the drugmakers he once accused of “getting away with murder.”
► In today’s Seattle Times — Flight attendants say they face frequent sexual harassment from passengers — Last year, a few high-profile incidents on airplanes highlighted the problem of sexual assaults of airline passengers. A new survey of airline flight attendants indicates that cabin crews also regularly endure sexual harassment and assault by abusive passengers. “It happens every day,” said Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants, the 50,000-member union that conducted the survey. “Not on every flight, but every day in the airline industry flight attendants are dealing with this issue.” In an interview, Nelson called for airlines to work to eradicate sexual misconduct on planes by setting up reporting procedures and training, and for airline CEOs to send a clear message that they intend to “change the culture in aviation.”
► In the People’s World — Labor’s Maria Elena Durazo on the ballot for California State Senate — Longtime labor activist and leader Maria Elena Durazo is a familiar and beloved name to hundreds of thousands of union members and working people.
► In today’s Washington Post — At Sean Hannity properties in working-class areas, an aggressive approach to rent collection — Managers at Hannity’s four largest apartment complexes in Georgia have sought court-ordered evictions at twice the statewide rate — in a state known for high numbers of evictions and landlord-friendly laws — and frequently have done so less than two weeks after a missed payment.
POINT OF PERSONAL PRIVILEGE
► The Entire Staff of The Stand would just like to say: We love Ichiro for many reasons, but today, because of this.
► If you’ve been anywhere near the Internets this week, you’ve probably already seen this remarkable new video by Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino), directed by Hiro Murai. If you haven’t, it’s a MUST-SEE that Rolling Stone calls “one of the year’s most important cultural moments already.” If you have, watch it again! It’s been viewed 75 million times in less than a week, probably because all the symbolism and hidden references in the background about racism and gun violence inspire multiple viewings.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.