August 28, 2017
Fast Facts
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Top Stories Federal Issues Other News Key Hearings/Meetings AWB Events & Resources AWB Institute Tweet of the Week They Said It
Top Stories

U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan visits Boeing to talk tax reform

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg sat with U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan in the company's 787 assembly factory last Thursday as the leader of the House talked about tax reform plans and emphasized the value of America's biggest exporter.

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Hirst ruling: Families left in limbo without statewide fix

The legislative stalemate over the Hirst water rights ruling fix and capital construction budget "is quite personal" for families who can't build on their rural properties because of Hirst, KING 5 reports.

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Seattle schools request to file separate briefs on state's education funding plan

Now that the Legislature has finished its budget work with record boosts in K-12 education funding, the state Supreme Court will decide if lawmakers have done enough to comply with the court's 2012 McCleary education funding decision.

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Seattle employers scrambling to comply with city's secure scheduling ordinance

The Seattle rules requiring three weeks of notice to employees about shift scheduling has created difficulties for employers and frustrations for employees, according to the Puget Sound Business Journal.

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Get ready for Policy Summit with new smartphone app, customized employer survey

With Policy Summit just a month away, now is the time to reserve a spot -- and to take a customized employee experience survey that futurist Jacob Morgan has developed for companies like Facebook and Apple. This is also the first time you can access AWB's new smartphone and tablet app. Suncadia Resort is nearly sold out, so book your room and reserve your spot at the table for this year's Policy Summit Sept. 19-21.

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Federal Issues

Interim president of Ex-Im Bank visits AWB, offers updates and thanks for advocacy

Charles Hall, acting chairman of the U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank, visited AWB's office in Olympia this morning. He offered an update on the work to fill open seats on the Ex-Im board. He also thanked AWB for its ongoing advocacy in support of this important trade tool for American manufacturers.

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Employers give pointed input on NAFTA renegotiation

Three top employer groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and National Association of Manufacturers, say that renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement must not remove a key provision on arbitration panels between private sector investors and governments.

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EPA to hold 10 meetings on revisions to 'Waters of the United States' rule

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last week announced 10 public hearings to gather input as it plans to rewrite an Obama-era water pollution rule, the "Waters of the United States" regulations under the Clean Water Act.

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Other News

Millennium gets permit after appeals deadline passes without a challenge

A major export terminal project in Longview moved a step closer to full approval last week. No challenges were filed to an 11,000-page environmental impact statement, and with a county appeals deadline now passed, Millennium Bulk Terminals has officially obtained one of the key permits it needs for its $680 million project.

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Bertha disassembled and last pieces hauled away from Seattle tunnel site

Farewell, Bertha. The deep-bore tunneling machine that famously broke down underneath Seattle is now just a memory. Last week, the machine, which was repaired and finished its job, was removed in its entirely from the disassembly pit at the end of its route.

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SEL wins U.S. Energy Association's Project of the Year Award

A project to improve power system reliability for two villages in Bosnia and Herzegovina has earned a major award from the U.S. Energy Association for Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories. The project doubled power reliability and is seen as proof of a concept that can be scaled up throughout southeastern Europe.

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Microsoft and Eastern Washington University create new degree program

A new kind of public-private partnership is emerging as Microsoft and Eastern Washington University are working together to offer a new data analytics degree. The university will integrate a 10-course data science program offered by Microsoft. Graduates will have not only a bachelor of science degree in data analytics, but also a Microsoft certificate.

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Twelfth annual Governor's Aerospace Summit to be held Sept. 7 in Lynnwood

Gov. Jay Inslee will speak on Sept. 7 at the 12th annual Governor's Aerospace Summit at the Lynnwood Convention Center. The busy day will also include an award ceremony led by Brad Tilden, CEO of Alaska Air Group, who will present the AFA Titan of Industry Award to Boeing's Ray Conner. Register here.

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Last chance to nominate community-minded corporations for Secretary of State's award

This Thursday is the deadline to submit nominations for the 2017 Corporations for Communities award. The Secretary of State's office runs this program to honor for-profit companies doing "amazing acts and charitable things in the communities they serve."

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Olympia-area veterans can receive free dental care on Sept. 23

This Thursday is the deadline to submit nominations for the 2017 Corporations for Communities award. The Secretary of State's office runs this program to honor for-profit companies doing "amazing acts and charitable things in the communities they serve."

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AWB closed for Labor Day

AWB's Olympia office will be closed on Labor Day. Fast Facts will be emailed out on Tuesday, Sept. 5. We wish everyone a safe, enjoyable and relaxing Labor Day!

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Key Hearings/Meetings

Tax and Fiscal Policy Council to meet Sept. 12 in Seattle

The AWB Tax and Fiscal Policy Council will meet from 10 a.m. to noon on Sept. 12 in Seattle. Contact Eric Lohnes, AWB government affairs director for tax and fiscal policy, to learn more, or Connie Carlson for call-in options.

AWB Events & Resources

AWB's new app offers a smart way to prepare for Policy Summit, Manufacturing Week and other events

Hot off the digital press, AWB's new smartphone and tablet app -- AWB Events 365 -- is now available in Apple and Google app stores. This easy-to-use app has detailed information on speakers, schedules, and more -- plus ways to connect with other attendees. The app is free. Download it before heading to Policy Summit next month to get the latest agenda and speaker updates Read more »

Webinar Sept. 6: Learn how to prepare for I-1433 paid sick and safe leave law

Washington voters approved Initiative 1433, which raised the statewide minimum wage and created a new mandate on employers to provide Paid Safe and Sick Leave. The new leave policy goes into effect Jan. 1, 2018, and will apply to every employer in the state with hourly employees. Find out what's required, and how to prepare, in a Sept. 6 webinar with Tim O'Connell of the law firm Stoel Rives.

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Webinar Oct. 19: Learn the latest on Washington's new Paid Family & Medical Leave law

Washington's new Paid Family and Medical Leave law was negotiated with employer concerns front and center, especially small businesses. Learn what's happening with this new law during an Oct. 19 webinar with AWB Government Affairs Director Bob Battles, who was a major employer advocate at the table during this legislative session.

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Rural Jobs Summit to be held at Big Bend Community College in Moses Lake

Top legislative leaders from both parties will gather in Moses Lake Oct 23-24 for AWB's Rural Jobs Summit. Big Bend Community College will host the event, which will continue the discussion started this spring about how to bring jobs to rural Washington and economic prosperity to the entire state. Watch this new video for more.

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Webinar Nov. 8: Learn how to navigate the Legislature online

Follow the latest legislative news right from your computer or phone with the tips, tricks and details that we'll teach you at the upcoming "Navigating & Bill Tracking" webinar. Cheri Randich of the Legislative Information Center will offer her insights on tracking the legislative process at this Nov. 8 AWB webinar.

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AWB offers long-term care solutions for you and your employees

As part of its range of services to help employers provide great benefits to their employees, AWB now offers a long-term care product. In partnership with Long Term Care Associates, this plan will help employers and employees protect their assets and experience peace of mind.

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AWB Institute

Celebrate Washington's vibrant manufacturing sector during Manufacturing Week this October

Manufacturing is the backbone of Washington's economy. To help highlight manufacturing in Washington, AWB will cross the state this October in a week-long tour. A video looks at all that's ahead during this busy, insight-filled week.

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Manufacturing Summit to be held Oct. 5 at Emerald City Trapeze Arts

The AWB Institute's annual Manufacturing Summit will be held Oct. 5 at Emerald City Trapeze Arts in Seattle. Highlights will include a roundtable discussion on manufacturing issues with state leaders, as well as presentation of the Manufacturing Excellence awards.

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Manufacturing Day will open up shop floors to neighbors, lawmakers and students

Washington's manufacturers are often too busy designing and creating products to open their doors to the public, and that means that the innovative work they do is often not visible to the general public. To tell the great story of modern manufacturing, Manufacturing Day on Oct. 6 will help Washington's manufacturers swing their doors open to a curious and admiring public and show off the great job opportunities to the next generation of workers.

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Tweet of the Week

Eclipse Flight

They Said It

Impressing the Speaker

"I have never seen anything like this in my entire life. This is really, really cool." ~ U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan after touring Boeing's 787 production facility in Everett last Thursday.

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Safely Transporting Vital Goods

Freight rail plays vital role in the community

By Courtney Wallace, BNSF

Freight rail plays a vital role in our community. Every day, BNSF trains haul grain to our ports, aluminum and steel to our factories, timber products, and containers full of clothes, processed food, TVs, computers, furniture and many other products to consumers in Idaho and across the Pacific Northwest.

We also haul hazardous materials, including chlorine that keeps our water supply safe, ammonia used to make fertilizer and crude oil that is refined to make gasoline for our vehicles, diesel fuel for our trucks, farm and construction equipment and jet fuel for aircraft. We recognize the special responsibility that comes with hauling hazardous materials, and we take additional measures to ensure their safe transport. For us, nothing is more important than safely operating through the communities that we serve.

For well over a century, BNSF has safely moved goods to and from the Northwest and is proud of our strong ties to North Idaho. Our commitment to preventing accidents contributed to the FRA declaring the last four years the safest for freight rail in U.S. history. This is a legacy we intend to maintain and enhance in the years to come.

Read the full commentary in the Bonner County Daily Bee
Unresolved for Far Too Long

In Our View: Speed up EFSEC Process

By The Columbian Editorial Board

We assume that, eventually, the state Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council will finalize a report regarding a proposed oil terminal at the Port of Vancouver. Then again, assumptions are fraught with peril, and at this point there is reason to question whether the process ever will be completed.

Last week, EFSEC granted a request by Vancouver Energy to extend the deadline on the application to Nov. 30. That marks the seventh extension to a process that was launched in 2013 when Tesoro Corp. and Savage Cos. -- now acting in conjunction as Vancouver Energy -- reached an agreement with port officials to build the terminal. In addition, council chair Bill Lynch announced plans to resign this fall, a move that might or might not lead to further delays.

As the high-profile proposal continues to meander through the permitting process, one thing has become clear: Once a decision is reached -- or maybe if one is reached -- it will be time for Washington to reconsider how it goes about approving such projects. The Tesoro-Savage proposal has lingered far too long and has been far too burdensome for the stakeholders and for citizens of Clark County.

Read the full editorial in The Columbian
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