October 31, 2016
Fast Facts
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Congress preparing for 'lame duck' session, setting sights on 2017 legislative agenda

The Nov. 8 election will make the committee meetings scheduled for the week of Dec. 5 an official "lame duck" session of Congress. Outgoing legislators and a change in America's commander -in-chief officially take office in January. Despite the uncertainty of majorities in the U.S. House and Senate, there is plenty of speculation on tax changes that may take place in 2017, depending on the makeup of the chambers and, of course, the president. Read more »

Northwest cities among 16 that formed Smart Cities Collaborative to advocate for urban mobility solutions

A coalition of 16 cities across America, including Portland and Seattle, formed the Smart Cities Collaborative. The group will advocate for new technology and ideas to quell gridlock, which could include automated vehicles, ride-sharing and data-analytics to better understand how people move around their cities. Read more »

NAM invites employers, business leaders to sign onto letter asking for unity in new federal administration, Congress

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), recognizing that employers have a powerful platform at the state and federal level, is asking business leaders and community organizations to sign onto a letter of unity that will be sent to the next president of the United States. NAM's goal is express the sincere desire across the nation to work together to grow the economy, create jobs and address the challenges Americans face in a bipartisan way. The deadline for signatures is next Monday, Nov. 7.
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Focus on Sustainability

Delivering the Future: How UPS Is Pursuing the Possibility of Sustainable E-Commerce

By Jim Bruce, senior vice president, UPS

At UPS, ours is anticipating the direction of e-commerce and staying ahead of it, because we believe that e-commerce will profoundly impact the development of our cities, lifestyles and business.

The question is whether e-commerce will improve or diminish global sustainability. We think it can go either way but are optimistic about the possibility of real improvement. Which way it goes depends on a number of factors: 1) Can we create a sustainable global delivery network? 2) Will people rely on that network enough to lessen reliance on personal vehicles and to increasingly live in decongested, pedestrian-friendly cities? And 3) Will cities begin to view e-commerce as essential to their sustainable future? Truly, a "yes" to these three questions would be transformative to our cities and global carbon-reduction efforts...

Read more at the National Association of Manufacturers blog
Washington's Hydropower Is No Laughing Matter

Who needs those old dams?

By Tracy Warner, editorial page editor, The Wenatchee World

They had a good laugh over it, the reports said. What a knee-slapper. Candidates for the United States Congress, at a recent climate change forum at a Ballard brewpub, indicated through their mistaken answers to a simple question that neither has any idea where electricity comes from. What a hoot...

Electricity doesn't just show up. It is not produced by flights of fancy, moonbeams, cool articles in Wired or a Harry Potter character waving a wand. It required the intense effort of generations, the labor of tens of thousands of people, and investments in the multiple billions to produce enough electricity to supply Seattle and provide the energy without which its thriving economy wouldn't be worth a 500K RAM chip from a 1984 IBM PC.

To feed the city energy there are hundreds of turbines, turning ceaselessly through the power of falling water from the great river of the West, harnessed by blocks of concrete so large we can scarcely imagine larger...

Of course, you don't get rid of such assets. You don't speak of it, even in jest.

Read the full column in The Wenatchee World
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