County commissions face the same options
Happening in Olympia
House Speaker Frank Chopp may be stepping down as speaker at the end of the 2019 session, but he still plans to seek re-election in 2020. “I’ve got a lot of energy, in case you haven’t noticed,” Chopp said. Chopp has a busy final session as speaker ahead, with an income tax, and energy tax, and a plastic bag ban on the docket. In fact, when asked about whether Dems would pursue a capital gains income tax, Chopp said, “There’s been a caucus proposal for many years, and you should expect some movement on that.” (Seattle Times)
The Washington state Supreme Court ruled against Microsoft, siding with a former employee accusing the company of laying her off in retaliation for an earlier legal action. The former employee contends the layoff related to a gender-discrimination complaint she had made in 2005. The Supreme Court reversed an appeals court ruling that found there was not enough evidence for the former employee’s case. “The court did not rule on whether retaliation actually took place. There was no retaliation and we are confident the trial court will agree,” Microsoft spokesman Stephen Carter said in an emailed statement. (Seattle Times)
Seattle city councilmember Kshama Sawant, who’s seat is up for reelection next year, has a challenger in Beto Yarce, who announced his campaign yesterday. “I came to the country—and city—with little more than dreams and aspirations. I lived on Capitol Hill in an era when it was affordable and welcoming for a young gay man bussing tables at a neighborhood restaurant,” said Yarce. Offering a much-needed change from Sawant’s very contentious relationship from business, Yarce says Seattle needs a council that understands what it takes to run a business. And with liberals currently swooning over Beto O’Rourke, Yarce’s first name can’t hurt. (My Northwest)
Spokane County commissioners voted 3-0 to file a lawsuit that seeks to block expansion of the board from three members to five. A bill passed down from Olympia would require counties with populations of more than 400,000 to have five commissioners elected by districts. The way the law was written, it effects only Spokane County. Commissioner Al French said, “They can start to create different standards for our counties that operate across the state, which really violates the uniformity provisions that were envisioned as part of the state constitution.” (The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga University is bending its knee to protestors by announcing the university will not allow conservative commentator Ben Shapiro appear on campus. Mr. Shapiro, a popular target of liberal protestors, was invited to speak at the campus by the school’s College Republicans chapter. The school cited its “Christian mission” in declining to allow Shapiro to speak on campus. Note that the reason cited isn’t Shapiro’s comments, but the reaction to those comments. “Mr. Shapiro’s appearances routinely draw protests that include extremely divisive and hateful speech and behavior, which is offensive to many people, regardless of their age, politics or beliefs,” said Biggs Garbuio, vice president of student development. (Campus Reform)
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