January 8, 2018
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Legislature convenes today with heavy workload for 'short' session

From manufacturing tax relief to education, Hirst to the capital budget, there's a lot for lawmakers to tackle in what is supposed to be a short 60-day legislative session. AWB's Government Affairs team went over the issues last week in a webinar highlighting the main issues for the legislative session that begins today.

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One week away: reserve your spot at AWB's annual Legislative Day and Hill Climb

The agenda is filling up -- and so are registration spots -- as AWB's Legislative Day and Hill Climb approaches. Register now to hear from issue experts on employment law, education, climate, manufacturing and much more. Don't miss this chance to engage directly with state leaders on issues that affect job creation. The event takes place Tuesday, Jan. 16, at the Hotel RL in Olympia.

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Gov. Inslee to release carbon tax plan on Tuesday, as other policy makers offer carbon-pricing plans

From Gov. Jay Inslee to Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, there are a number of carbon-pricing plans being made public this week as the 2018 legislative session kicks off. AWB is actively engaged in the policy discussions, working to find a solution that will ensure carbon emissions decline and Washington's economic landscape can remain competitive.

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AWB's Legislative Review offers a big-picture look at important employer issues as session begins

With lawmakers beginning their work this year, AWB's wide-ranging Legislative Review and Vote Record is a timely look at what transpired last year and what issues remain for lawmakers. The newly released Legislative Review -- including the always popular Vote Record -- was mailed out last week and is available to read online.

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Audit: Washington could be a doing a much better job on workforce training

A new report by the Washington state auditor says that Washington has a lot of room to improve in its work to help students build career and technical education skills. The 78-page report offers specific recommendations on how to improve the state's career and technical education programs.

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Don't Spend Rainy Day Fund

Washington's debt level a cause for concern

By The Editorial Board of The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin

... Washington state Treasurer Duane Davidson has urged lawmakers and the governor to keep their hands off the state's rainy-day fund, noting that we are in an economic expansion, which is the time to be saving, not borrowing.

With that, we heartily agree.

Read the full editorial in The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin
Fiscal Restraint

Our Voice: It's not raining hard enough to dip into state reserves

By The Editorial Board of The Tri-City Herald

The state's rainy-day fund is supposed to grow when times are good so there is money available when times are tough.

A simple enough plan to understand, yet apparently difficult for some lawmakers to follow.

Gov. Jay Inslee's budget includes taking money from the state's emergency reserves to help pay for teacher salaries in the 2018-19 school year, but we think this would be a mistake.

The legislative session begins Monday, and we advise the Legislature to find some other way to meet its obligation to public education without "borrowing" from reserves...

Read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald
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