January 29, 2018
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
Federal Issues

FedEx, Starbucks among latest employers to pass tax break on to employees

More high-profile companies have announced pay raises, stock grants and other investments in their workforces in the wake of the federal government’s biggest tax overhaul in decades.

Starbucks will spend about $250 million of the tax cut on raises and employee benefits, Forbes reports. The raises vary, but retail partners will receive at least $500 and store managers will receive $2,000, for example.

FedEx announced a $3.2 billion investment in wages, bonuses, pensions and the company’s FedEx Express hub in Indianapolis. This includes $200 million in pay raises, $1.5 billion to the FedEx pension plan and $1.5 billion to “significantly expand” the FedEx hub in Indianapolis.

Contact Amy Anderson, AWB government affairs director for federal issues, to learn more.

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Not the Solution

Look to B.C. for evidence carbon tax doesn't work

By Brier Dudley

If Washington wants to reduce pollution and fare better on its climate-change goals, it should reject Gov. Jay Inslee's proposed carbon tax.

Instead, the state should put its efforts into environmental regulations that directly and measurably reduce harmful emissions.

As proposed, the carbon tax is a grab bag of handouts for the powerful and politically connected, funded by a steep new tax largely on the middle class. Many of the handouts have dubious benefits in reducing emissions.

Carbon taxes also don't work as promised. North America's first such tax, in neighboring British Columbia, is failing to reduce emissions.

Emissions from driving are rising faster than population growth in B.C., despite a carbon tax higher than Inslee's proposal...

Read the full column The Seattle Times
Snake River Dams

Washington's dams balance clean energy needs, fish protections

By AWB President Kris Johnson

Construction of the four Lower Snake River dams -- Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite -- began in 1962. Back then, the focus was on the efficient production of energy, transporting goods and supplying water to Washington's vibrant agricultural sector.

Today, the dams produce 40 percent of the region's energy through clean hydropower generation, support agricultural production and transportation, and improve our quality of life by lifting the economy and supporting recreation. They are also integral to flood control.

Equally critical, they support healthy fish and wildlife populations and their complex life cycles, thanks to a series of improvements to the dams set out in Federal Columbia River Power System's (FCRPS) 2014 biological opinion, or BiOp...

Read the full guest column in The Spokesman-Review
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