October 7, 2019
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
Federal Issues

U.S. Economy Added 136,000 Jobs in September

Unemployment dropped to its lowest rate since December 1969, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday, dropping from 3.7% in August to 3.5% in September. In more good news, American employers added 136,000 jobs in September.

Job gains and historically low unemployment have helped buffer the U.S. economy, the newspaper wrote. And a falling unemployment rate should help ease fears of a recession.

“There were a lot of concerns that we were going to start rolling downhill and accelerating in the wrong direction, and the fact that we didn’t do that is itself a win,” said Josh Wright, chief economist at iCIMS Inc.

The Journal also wrote that may workers who did not reap economic gains earlier in the economic expansion now have record-low levels of unemployment.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell in a Friday speech said the economy faces some growth risks but remains in a good place overall, the newspaper reported.

“Our job is to keep it there as long as possible,” Powell said in prepared remarks.

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

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A Win-Win for Washington Communities

Innovative mills help economy, environment at same time

By AWB President Kris Johnson and state Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz

Business, government, and residents share the same values. We place the highest premium on vibrant communities, healthy lands, and clean water.

With the right leadership and bold vision, we can create jobs and economic opportunity and preserve a healthy and clean environment. This clearly is apparent with the emergence of cross-laminated timber, which will play a key role in creating jobs in rural communities, providing building supplies to cities and towns, and reducing wildfire danger.

Read the full op-ed in the Spokane Journal of Business.
Let's call a timeout on rulemaking

Washington state's massive rulemaking is strangling businesses and must be reined in

By state Rep. Vicki Kraft, R-Vancouver

During the final three days of the 105-day legislative session in April, more than $2 billion in new and higher taxes were approved by majority Democrats. These included new and increased business and occupation taxes on more than 90,000 employers and certain banks, a graduated real estate excise tax on both residential and commercial sales, a higher tax on oil and ending the sales tax exemption for Oregonians and changing it into an annual remittance program.

Because Oregon is so close to Southwest Washington's 17th Legislative District, which I represent, I've been concerned about how these tax increases affect us locally, especially our smaller businesses operating on razor-thin margins...

Read the full column in The Reflector of Battle Ground.