December 11, 2017
Fast Facts
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Secretary of State honors top employers with 'Corporations for Communities' Award

A number of AWB members were among the top 'Corporations for Communities' that Secretary of State Kim Wyman honored last week for service to their neighbors, employees and customers.

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Beware of phone scam targeting businesses, Department of Revenue warns

Scammers are targeting businesses by calling and claiming to be from the state Department of Revenue. The callers ask for over-the-phone payment to renew expired business licenses -- something the actual Department of Revenue will never do.

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Seattle adding taxes on consumers as cost-of-living continues to rise

On Jan. 1, a new tax on beverages will hit Seattle consumers, causing the prices on many products to double. The new taxes, passed hastily without a public vote, will make Seattle an even more expensive place to live, work and play.

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Rulemaking proceeds for paid family leave

Rulemaking is underway for the new bipartisan paid family leave program that passed the Legislature this year.

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Paid safe and sick program leave begins Jan. 1

The voter-approved safe and sick leave law, initiative 1433, will take effect starting Jan. 1.

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Bridging the Skills Gap

Look to community colleges for diverse tech-industry talent

By Sheila Edwards Lange, president of Seattle Central College

Seattle's technology industry has a diversity problem. While tech companies have publicly committed to changing their hiring practices, people of color and women are still being left out of what feels more and more like an exclusive club.

Only one in five STEM workers identify as black or Latino, and less than 25 percent of STEM jobs are held by women. With equity front and center at the recent Washington STEM Summit, we must do more than talk. We must work together -- and two-year colleges are a natural partner in the effort to achieve this important goal...

It is not hard to see the tremendous potential of teaming up, where colleges such as ours and tech companies work together to create cutting-edge programs that teach the skills they need, in ways that are accessible to diverse students. Working together, we can train more local workers to fill the growing number of great jobs in the technology sector, thousands of which remain unfilled..

Read the full op-ed in The Seattle Times
Dams Provide Clean, Green Power

Inslee support for possible dam-breaching 'unfathomable'

By Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch

This issue needs to be decided at the highest level. You can't manage a hydro system this big and this important from the bench. Congress passed the laws that protect endangered species, and it paid for the dams in the first place. It is in the best position to decide whether we take a balanced view, or submit to environmental overkill.

You'd think a governor so concerned with our carbon footprint would be interested in preserving clean power in the Pacific Northwest. There really is no middle ground here, and he ought to know better. What's he saying? Dam breaching is OK if we just take a little from the top?

Read the full news release
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