Washington State Court Tosses Union Initiative Law

Bear with me on this one . . .  On Christmas Eve, the Appeals Court in the state of Washington invalidated a voter-approved law known as the Hotel Employee Health and Safety Initiative. On its face, Initiative 124 dealt only with hotel employees, however the depth and breadth of its provisions could have stretched far…

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Seattle Soda Tax Collections Beat Estimates

As we know, the city of Seattle passed its new 1.75 cents per ounce tax on soda and other sugary drinks in June 2017 and made it effective January 2018. Almost one year since to the day, the city is boasting soda tax receipts of over $16.9 million – almost $2 million in revenue beyond…

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Stopping More Soda Taxes

Out in the “other Washington” (that would be the state), voters in November will be asked to prohibit local communities from imposing additional taxes on groceries including soda or other sugary beverages. If passed, Initiative 1634 would not affect Seattle’s tax on soda, syrups and sugary beverages of 1.75 cents per ounce, but it will…

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Who has More Loyal Fans?

When it comes to customer loyalty, Dunkin’ may just have an edge on its closest rival Cultivating satisfied, loyal customers has always been an important factor to the success of any business, but since social media has enabled rapid-fire opinion sharing, happy customers are more important today than ever. According to a 2016 Forrester Research…

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“Put Down the Straw! You’re Under Arrest!”

The latest environmental fad – banning or at least severely restricting the use of plastic (bags, food containers, cups, straws, etc.) – continues to ripple across the country and you may think I’m kidding, but the city of Santa Barbara has taken it to a whole new level. Last week, the Santa Barbara City Council…

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Seattle Repeals “Head Tax”

The city of Seattle responded to the stoppage of business expansion by corporate giant Amazon.com by voting to repeal the $275 per employee “head tax” the municipality had just adopted only a few weeks ago (on May 14). Amazon had stopped construction of a new building just 2 weeks before the council voted the tax…

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Seattle Approves “Head Tax” on Employers

Apparently determined to kill economic prosperity, at least within its own city limits, Seattle city councilors unanimously voted to impose a new tax on large employers within the city. Mayor Jenny Durkan, who won the office last November after her predecessor Mayor Ed Murray was caught in a child sex abuse scandal, threatened to veto…

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Seattle Joins Soda Tax Brigade

From the Pacific Northwest, effective January 1, 2018, Seattle becomes the latest city to impose a new tax on so-called sugary drinks as the city will begin charging a new 1.75 cents per ounce tax on the distribution of sodas and other sweetened beverages. Technically, the tax will be imposed on beverage distributors, but they…

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Seattle Mayor Resigns, Millionaire Tax Challenged

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, who dropped his campaign for reelection back in May, resigned this week as Mayor in the face of the fifth person (this one his younger cousin) coming forward to accuse him of child sexual abuse. Murray officially vacated the office effective at 5PM on Wednesday and City Council President Bruce Harrell…

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A Tale of Two Wage Studies

There continues to be much debate around the country about the wisdom of increasing minimum wages and how big an increase can be before it becomes detrimental to the local economy and the very workers the increase is supposed to help. Well, two recent studies of the impact on Seattle employees of the Seattle minimum…

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