We all have a new sense of freedom this year as we celebrate Independence Day. We hope everyone safely enjoys the weekend!
Like many of our readers, the staff at Shift has avoided learning more about a new state payroll tax that was established to fund a state-run long-term care program. The issue seemed messy and complicated, and we were busy with COVID mandates, liberal political violence, and the elections. Yet, many of our readers requested more information on the issue. Upon learning the details, we must agree, this is an important issue for everyone to learn more about, for it will soon impact all of our personal finances and could rapidly grow into another large, expensive, and unwieldy government entitlement program. To provide everyone with an initial briefing on the long-term care payroll tax, we interviewed one of the foremost experts on the issue, Elizabeth Hovde of the Washington Policy Center. Hovde recently joined the WPC team after being a journalist for the Vancouver Columbian and The Oregonian. (Click to read full Newsmaker Interview)
Instead of unifying Washington residents at the start of the pandemic, Governor Jay Inslee chose to make critical decisions based on partisan factors and this negatively impacted the state’s efforts to contain the COVID virus. In the second article of our two-part series, we examine how Governor Inslee’s partisan actions negatively impacted the state’s COVID response. Governor Inslee took several partisan steps in his immediate response to COVID, such as ignoring letters from Republican lawmakers, forming “advisory groups” made up solely of campaign supporters, taking unnecessary jabs at the Trump Administration, forming alliances with only other Democrat governors.
He also gave pay raises to his supporters in the government unions and ignored the political violence committed by liberal activists – and that was just by the summer of last year!
These partisan acts caused many people to lose confidence in Governor Inslee. Thus, a large segment of the state’s population have dismissed the governor’s legitimate advice about wearing face masks and becoming vaccinated, meaning his partisan actions caused the avoidable spread of the virus and likely cost lives. (Click to read full Shift Article)
“Drive-by” lawsuits over Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance are financially hurting many small businesses in Washington State. The drill is that semi-sleazy trial lawyers find clients who have disabilities and start filing lawsuits against small businesses for failing to fully comply with ADA requirements. It is suspected that often the disabled plaintiff never actually visited the business and that multiple lawsuits are filed in the hope that one of the businesses pays the claim. One Spokane attorney has filed at least 17 lawsuits against Eastern Washington businesses. The business owner is told they have just 21 days to comply with the often-expensive requirement or face penalties. Legislation was introduced during the 2021 legislative session which would give business owners a little more time to have their facility become compliant. HB 1574 states that owners need to be provided with 30 days’ notice before a lawsuit can be filed. (KNDU/KNDO and Washington Legislature Bill Summary)
Former Democrat state legislator and current contender to become Seattle’s next failed mayor, Jessyn Farrell posted this tweet which has left many people scratching their heads (or falling on the floor laughing). After it was posted Thursday afternoon, it was soon being forwarded on social media by many who were amazed that someone who claims to be a serious contender to become mayor would push this nonsense into the public square. And guess what – because it received so much negative attention on Thursday evening, the Farrell campaign deleted the tweet this morning. That’s a real profile in courage (of her convictions). (Jessyn Farrell Twitter)
Ari Hoffman of The Post Millennial obtain footage of liberal King County Council candidate (and current highly paid City of Seattle employee) Ubax Gardheere boarding a school bus full of children and stating she might have a bomb and that she was “prepared to die.” The terrifying incident occurred in 2010. As school children ran from the bus, she called them “cowards.” Police were called to the scene where Gardheere was arrested. Original felony charges were compromised down to a gross misdemeanor. Gardheere is one of three liberal candidates challenging King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn this year. Her campaign is supported by state Democrat Senator Rebecca Saldana, Seattle City Councilmember Tammy Morales, and Redmond City Councilmember Varisha Khan.
The Millennial broke this story a couple of weeks ago, and despite Gardheere’s support from many of the region’s top liberal officials, there has been almost no coverage of her past terror-inducing actions in the local media, nor have fellow liberals been asked to comment on the incident. Gardheere is currently a $130,000-a-year director of the City of Seattle’s Equitable Development Division, where evidently screaming at children is considered an “equitable” trait. (The Millennial and Shift)
Seattle residents are upset by the lack of assistance they are receiving from Mayor Jenny Durkan, their councilmembers, and city bureaucrats over the increasing number of homeless encampments in neighborhoods. Liberals, who always push for larger governments to solve societal problems, are hiding from their responsibility to assist with a problem they alone have created. Liberal policies have clearly enabled the growing homeless problem in the city, and despite spending billions in tax money, the problem continues to worsen.
Encampments have expanded into residential neighborhoods, causing residents concern for their safety and their children’s inability to enjoy their parks. They are also concerned about the well-being of those living in the encampments, who are not receiving help for their addiction or mental problems. Residents have reached out to city officials, who have provided no answers for how to clean up the encampments or give the homeless the assistance they need. (MyNorthwest)
Little brother is growing up! The City of Lacey is on the verge of overtaking Olympia as the most populated city in Thurston County. Due to annexation and growth, Lacey is now just 230 people shy of the population of the state’s capitol city. According to newly released state figures, Olympia has 55,010 residents, while Lacey has 54,780. (The Olympian and Washington State Office of Financial Management)
Members of the Washington State Senate Democrat caucus, who are often dismissive about the hard work of our state’s farmers, have suddenly become extremely quiet regarding the economic impact being felt by Eastern Washington wheat farmers during the current heat wave. The Democrat Senate caucus distributed a memo during the 2021 legislative session debate on the unconstitutional state income tax on capital gains stating that Democrat senators should reject claims made by agricultural groups that the tax would severely impact family farms. The argument used by the caucus was that farmers need to pay the tax because they become wealthy while “working less than half-time.”
We should note that since this memo became public, not one member of the Senate Democrat caucus, including Senate Democrat Leader Andy Billig of Spokane, has felt the need to apologize for the insulting comment. And, seemingly, no member of the media is asking them why not.
Recent news coverage and social media posts from Eastern Washington Republican legislators detail the devastation which is occurring to the wheat crops. Some estimates claim that 50% of this season’s wheat crop could be destroyed. This not only impacts the farmers, but everyone in the region. As one farmer said, “The more money we make, the more we spread to the community. The less money we make, it actually affects everybody in the community.” (KREM TV, Democrat Senate Caucus memo, and Representative Jacquelin Maycumber Facebook post)
Due to Governor Inslee continuing to extend the state’s eviction moratorium (despite there being more jobs than workers in the current market), the Spokane County Treasurer has sought to help apartment owners by extending the deadline landlords must pay their property taxes. Republican Treasurer Michael Baumgartner has pushed the tax deadline back to September 30th, since many landlords are unable to collect rent from their tenants, while at the same time being responsible for paying expenses related to the rental units. (Spokesman-Review)
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