November 28, 2016
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
Top Stories

Federal court temporarily blocks new DOL overtime rule, now heads to Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals

The federal rule that would double the minimum salary of employees eligible for overtime pay was put on hold Nov. 22 by a federal judge in Texas. The rule was set to take effect Dec. 1.

The court’s order was based its determination that the U.S. Department of Labor exceeded its delegated authority by increasing the minimum salary level without congressional approval, according to a memo from labor and employment lawyers at Lane Powell.

Now that the rule is tied up in litigation for what could be months or even years, there are other possibilities that could impact whether the rule will ultimately be enacted, such as possible action by the new administration or Congress.

Bob Battles, AWB government affairs director for employment and labor issues, urges employers to be cautious by not scrapping plans to comply because a conflicting ruling in the future could put the rule back into effect.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce offers its perspective on the issue here.

For more information on this rule and what it means to employers, AWB members should contact Battles at 360.943.1600 or seek legal counsel.

« Back to Main
A Lack of Effective Training

Too many Washington kids are not college- or job-ready

By Steve Mullin, president of the Washington Roundtable

Students in Washington classrooms today will soon enter a job market bursting with opportunities. New research from The Boston Consulting Group and the Washington Roundtable projects 740,000 job openings in our state in just the next five years. State job growth over that period is expected to be nearly triple the national average.

Increasingly, Washington students will need a postsecondary credential -- such as a technical or industry certification or license, apprenticeship, associate degree or bachelor's degree -- to access the best job opportunities our state has to offer.

A survey of Washington Roundtable member companies shows a universal preference to hire Washington kids for Washington jobs. We have no doubt other employers feel similarly.

The challenge is this: Just 31 percent of the students who attend a public high school in our state go on to attain a postsecondary credential by age 26. Less than a third are prepared for the jobs of the future. 

That's not good enough.

Read the full op-ed in The Seattle Times
Supporting the Snake River Dams

Our dams support us; it's time to support them

By U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Following Judge Michael Simon's recent decision to require a full review of the Columbia and Snake River systems, there has been a movement to reevaluate what our dams mean to Eastern Washington.

Here in our region, the four lower Snake River dams provide renewable, reliable, affordable energy and act as a superhighway for barges to transport goods. As a community, we need to let our federal partners know that we want to continue to invest in and improve our dams.

Currently, the Army Corps of Engineers is undertaking a public "scoping" period through January 17, 2017, providing an opportunity for Eastern Washington residents to voice their support for dams and the benefits they offer to the region.

Read the full op-ed from The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin
Upcoming Events