December 12, 2016
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Top Stories

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers expected to be choice to head U.S. Department of the Interior

A longtime friend of Washington employers has been selected as the next secretary of the interior. President-Elect Donald Trump has reportedly chosen U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, a Spokane Republican, for the cabinet-level post overseeing America's public lands. The timing of the announcement has not been determined.

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AWB in D.C.: Congressional meetings, visits with national associations caps off third annual AWB D.C. Fly-in

AWB wrapped up its third annual D.C. fly-in last week. The event kicked off with a candlelight tour of the Capitol followed by two full days of meetings with the state's congressional delegation, the National Association of Manfacturers and others. The discussions covered trade and infrastructure as well as insights into the new administration.

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Governor to release his McCleary plan Tuesday and proposed 2017-19 state operating budget Wednesday

The governor will release his K-12 McCleary education funding plan this Tuesday. On Wednesday, he'll release his 2017-19 budget proposal. As legislators prepare for these documents, recently released numbers from the state Office of Financial Management have some lawmakers concerned about the process of calculating expenditures and what it could mean to taxpayers.

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AWB's Legislative Day & Hill Climb just one month away

Join AWB, fellow business leaders and elected and state agency officials to learn more about the Legislature and lend the employer perspective to Olympia at the annual Legislative Day and Hill Climb Tuesday, Jan. 17, at the Hotel RL (formerly the Red Lion Hotel). The morning will be filled with panels on key issues and a keynote address by Skylar Olsen, a senior economist at Zillow. Attendees will have an opportunity to meet with their lawmakers during the afternoon. The day ends with a networking reception. Registration is now open.

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Federal Issues

Trump administration will be able to weigh in on legal appeals over federal overtime rule

The federal overtime rule that was scheduled to go into effect on Dec. 1 will remain in legal limbo for at least the next few months. Court filings and oral arguments will extend until after inauguration day, giving the incoming Trump administration the opportunity to weigh in and potentially abandon the U.S. Department of Labor's current position.

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Other News

Washington's charter schools law named best in the nation

Washington is tied with Indiana and Nevada for having the best charter school law in the nation, according to a National Association of Charter School Authorizers report. "Washington is a national model for how to get charter school policies right," the group said last week.

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Bellmont Cabinet Company receives Seattle Business magazine's Family Business Award for growth

Sumner's Bellmont Cabinet Company was one of 12 companies recognized by Seattle Business magazine with its 2016 Family Business Award. Bellmont received the award for its notable growth in the region.

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Alaska Air Group gets green light for purchase of Virgin America; will become fifth-largest airline

Seattle-based Alaska Air Group, parent company of Alaska Airlines, has received the last major regulatory approval it needs to buy Virgin America. The combined airline will be the nation's fifth-largest, and is expected to fly more passengers out of West Coast airports than any other carrier.

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'Bright future ahead for Boeing in Washington,' says company executive

Half of Boeing's global workforce of 160,000 work in Washington. While most are employed in the Puget Sound area, and the company and its suppliers operate across the state, a company executive noted last week while speaking in Moses Lake.

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Toys for Tots program raises nearly $29,000 at Hanford Vit Plant

Bechtel National Inc. employees at the Hanford Vit Plant donated nearly $29,000 to the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve's Toys for Tots campaign in a single day last week. It's the 10th year that the Vit Plant took part.

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Leader of Washington State Ferries retiring

Lynn Griffith, leader of the Washington State Ferry system, has announced her retirement. She has led the nation's largest ferry system since 2014.

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Attorney general, secretary of state team up to ensure Washingtonians 'give smart'

Make sure your charitable donations do all the good you intend -- and don't end up in the pockets of scammers -- with some smart holiday tips from two state elected officials.

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AWB Events & Resources

Registration now open for 2017 Employment Law webinar series

Employment law is a crucial part of navigating today's business world. Learn the basics along with the latest legal changes during AWB's 2017 Employment Law webinar series. Ensure access to all six, and save money through our early bird pricing, by signing up before Jan. 6. Read more »

Join AWB Jan. 5 for a free 2017 Legislative Session Forecast Webinar

AWB's Government Affairs team will offer their insights and take participant questions on what may come up in the 2017 legislative session during a live webinar on Jan. 5. This event is in preparation for the beginning of the 105-day session that begins Monday, Jan. 9.

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Finally, a 401(k) retirement plan built for small businesses!

An all-new website highlights MyFuture 401(k), a program that allows small-business owners to offer robust, full-featured retired plans for their employees without the costs and hassle of running a full retirement program on their own. Read more »

Tweet of the Week

#AWBinDC



They Said It

Bring Back Vocational Training

"Some students are mechanical; others are artistic. Some focus best in a lecture hall or classroom; still others learn best by doing, and would thrive in the studio, workshop or shop floor." ~ Nicholas Wyman, CEO of the Institute for Workplace Skills and Innovation.




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Sustainability in Action

Building with renewables

By Washington Business magazine

With the tagline "engineered to outlive you," Brooks Manufacturing Co. designs and manufactures quality wood crossarms and transmission framing products for the electric utility industry. Established in 1915, Brooks Manufacturing has been owned and operated by the Brooks family since 1935. Brooks is a certified woman-owned business enterprise.

The company's Douglas fir crossarms come from sustainable forests that are managed to meet the social, economic, and ecological needs of present and future generations.
Read the full article in Washington Business magazine
Jobs are Waiting

Wrap up review of Longview coal terminal

By The Everett Herald Editorial Board

As long as we're talking about bubbles, perhaps those of us in Snohomish and King counties ought to take a look outside ours to other parts of the state that aren't sharing in all aspects of the state's economic rebound.

Both counties enjoy the state's lowest unemployment rates as of October: 4 percent in Snohomish County and 3.7 percent in King. Counties in southwest Washington, however, continue to lag with unemployment rates of 6 percent in Clark, 7.2 percent in Cowlitz, 7.6 percent in Lewis and 8.6 percent in Wahkiakum County.
Read the full editorial in The Everett Herald (subscription required)
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