We're delighted to have as our guest Joel Connelly, longtime scribe for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Joel regales us with tales from his career in journalism covering politics and environmental issues, plus his earlier days as a volunteer for Eugene McCarthy in the 1968 presidential campaign and staffer for George McGovern in '72. Politics has certainly changed over the years: Joel notes that campaign fundraisers not only used to be open to the press, but they were bipartisan!
To the surprise of no one, the Seattle City Council yesterday approved the most restrictive employee-scheduling mandate in the country. Coined "secure scheduling" by the labor groups that backed the effort to pass it, the new law - which goes into effect next July - is far-reaching. As The Seattle Times reports,
Housing in Seattle proper, and the greater Seattle region, is expensive. And with many more residents expected to settle here in the coming years, people are looking for ways to increase the housing supply. But adding more housing - especially within the City of Seattle itself - is proving to be a highly controversial issue.
The Puget Sound Business Journal reported earlier this week on some new business that may be coming Washington state's way:
Spike Aerospace, a Boston startup developing an ambitious new supersonic business jet, is talking with Washington state officials and aerospace suppliers about possibly locating its new manufacturing plant in Seattle.
Washington's apple industry alone accounts for 40,000 jobs in this state. Add to apples our state's other tree fruit crops - cherries, pears, peaches and the like - and you've got a major economic driver. In this episode we talk with the president of the Washington State Tree Fruit Association, Jon DeVaney, about the importance of international trade agreements to keeping the sector healthy and competitive. As Jon points out, trade agreements lead to predictable, consistent trade rules for Washington apples, one-third of which are exported overseas.
Tomorrow the state Supreme Court will hear arguments in the McCleary case, after which it will decide whether to continue sanctions on the Legislature. The News Tribune has a preview of what could happen.
Bloomberg View has an interesting pair of stories in which former U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick and economist Tyler Cowen discuss trade, which has gotten a bad rap this election season.
In the first installment, Zoellick notes,
San Bernardino, California has been in bankruptcy for four years now. According to a story in Governing Magazine, it's not because of debt or pensions (which tend to be the culprits in other city bankruptcies). Instead, the problem is
San Bernardino’s lengthy and convoluted charter, a document that gives so much authority to so many officials that it’s completely ineffective.
In Washington, schools are funded mainly by the property tax (levied at the state and local level). In the McCleary case on school funding, the state Supreme Court said that local levies are not dependable and regular enough to be used for basic education.