Over on the Taxgirl blog, Kelly Phillips Erb ponders press coverage of Bill and Hillary Clinton's estate tax reduction strategies (Admit It: The Clintons Didn't Do Any Tax Planning You Wouldn't Do). Along the way, she discusses the misuse of the term "tax loophole."
The state Employment Security Department issued its employment report for May this morning. The preliminary estimate is that seasonally adjusted employment in Washington grew by 4,000 from April to May. The estimate of March to April job growth was revised upward to 8,900, from the preliminary figure of 7,700 announced in last month's report. The preliminary estimate of May's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the state is 6.1 percent, which is the same as the unrevised estimate for April.
New general fund state revenue forecast: up $156 million for 2013-15 biennium; up $234 million for 2015-17 biennium
The state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council (ERFC) held its quarterly meeting today. The forecast of general fund-state revenue for the current biennium (2013-15) increased by $156.6 million to $33,169.9 million. The forecast of general fund-state revenue for the upcoming biennium (2015-17) increased by $238.3 million to $35,935.2 million.
Trade is an important part of Washington's economy.
In Politico, venture capitalist Mark Andreesen writes about how to create innovation clusters. Instead of trying to copy Silicon Valley, policymakers
State Supreme Court orders lawmakers to explain why they should not be held in contempt on school funding
The Court's has long signaled its impatience with the legislature's slow progress toward meeting the McCleary obligation to fund basic education. Wait until next year wasn't going to work again. Yesterday's action - an order to appear at a show cause hearing - steps up the pressure.
Another business climate ranking came out recently. This one comes from Thumbtack.com, with support from the Kauffman Foundation. Washington doesn't do so well. Unsurprisingly, the regulatory environment pulled the overall score down considerably.
Some of the key findings for Washington include:
The Puget Sound Business Journal explains how Seattle voters may still see a minimum wage issue on the November ballot. As we wrote yesterday, some business leaders felt pressured by the possibility of a $15 charter amendment.
This morning the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council issued its monthly Economic and Revenue Update. Here are the key bullets on revenue from the summary: