Story Summary

SeaTac Proposition 1

SeaTac  workers said Wednesday, June 5, they had submitted enough voters’ signatures to the Seatac City Clerk’s Office to put on the November ballot their ‘Good Jobs Initiative’ to raise employees’ wages and benefits to $15 an hour. The measure was approved by voters in the November 2013 general election.

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Local News
11/26/13

Opponents of SeaTac minimum wage proposition request recount

SEATAC, Wash. — A group opposed to SeaTac’s Proposition 1, a measure raising minimum wage for airport and airport-related workers to $15 an hour, has requested the city recount votes in the hotly contested ballot measure, officials of the group said.

seatac-good-jobs-petitions

Courtesy: The Stand

Proposition 1  passed by 77 votes. The final, certified count of ballots Tuesday afternoon was Yes 3,040 votes to No 2,963.

The group, Common Sense SeaTac, is supported by Alaska Airlines, rental car companies and other airline industries. Common Sense said it will request a recount by hand. It is believed the group will have to pay for the recount, as is standard in many local elections.

Common Sense has previously said that many of the workers who benefit from wage increase live outside SeaTac, with the city being forced to burden most of the cost.

“We recognize income inequality is an issue,” Alaska Airlines media relations manager Bobbie Egan said. “However, raising the minimum wage to the highest in the nation for only select entry-level workers and mandating other requirements on employers violates several state and federal laws. The city of SeaTac, its businesses and residents would be better served by a different approach to this issue.”

SEATAC — A measure that would raise the minimum wage to $15-an-hour in SeaTac will most likely pass.

seatac workerProposition 1 would raise the minimum wage for hospitality and transportation workers.  t also requires employers to provide paid sick leave and offer more hours to part time workers before hiring additional part timers.

Washington state already boasts one of the highest minimum wages in the country at $9.32-an-hour.

The Seattle Times is reporting that as of Friday, 76 votes separate the “Yes” and “No” campaigns. The measure might be challenged and a recount is a very real possibility.

Opponents of the measure includes many small business owners who are worried the wage increase would dig into profits and force cutbacks.

The final numbers of the vote will be announced at 3 p.m. Tuesday. Supporters of the measure will hold a press conference at 11:30 a.m at the SeaTac arrival hall to perhaps announce a victory.

 

 

SEATTLE — Seattle’s newest City Council member is already making waves even before taking office.

At a Machinists rally Monday night in Westlake Park, Kshama Sawant minced no words when it came to Boeing’s management.

“We salute the Machinists for having the courage to reject this blatant highway robbery from the executives of Boeing in pursuit of their endless, endless thirst for private profit,” Sawant said.

sawantBut Boeing wasn’t Sawant’s only target.  She also took aim at both Republican and Democratic lawmakers in Olympia for approving the historic $9 billion tax-break package to try to guarantee the 777X would be built in the state.

“We have to condemn the state Legislature for capitulating yet again,” she said.  “Yet again.”

It doesn’t seem that Sawant has plans to tone down her rhetoric to fit in to Seattle’s nine-member City Council.  Nor is she worried about getting along with Olympia, which, it should be pointed out, controls a lot of purse strings for Seattle.  Indeed, the big question when it comes to Sawant is whether she will be willing to compromise with her colleagues, or whether her socialism will make her a permanent outsider.

The $15 minimum wage idea for Seattle will be the first big test of her style.  She’s pushing for it hard.  Mayor-elect Ed Murray says he supports the idea, but wants to phase it in and work with all parties – labor, business, and others – to find a plan they can all agree on.  He doesn’t want a divisive ballot measure such as that occurring in SeaTac.

Sawant, however, doesn’t seem ready to give him much slack.

“We are fed up with empty election-year promises,” Sawant said.  “We want action, and we want $15 an hour in 2014.”

Will she participate in minimum wage negotiations, or go straight to the people with a ballot measure?

Everyone is watching.

SEATTLE — The election results on the SeaTac $15 minimum wage proposal grew even closer Wednesday, with approval leading by only 19 votes.

seatac-good-jobs-petitions

Courtesy: The Stand

SeaTac’s Proposition 1 requiring at least a $15 minimum wage for airport workers and airport-related businesses was winning 54-46% on Election Night, but since then the vote has continually narrowed.  King County Elections’ 4:30 p.m. Wednesday count showed the issue was virtually tied at 50%, with only 19 votes separating the two sides — 2,749 yes votes and 2,730 no votes.

King County Elections said its next vote count would be released at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

Ballots will continued to be counted and then certified Nov. 26. A recount is all but certain in this election.

Opponents said if they do lose, they won’t rule out a challenge and the issue could end up in a courtroom.

 

 

 

SEATTLE — Only 43 votes separated approval or rejection of the SeaTac $15 minimum wage proposal as of Tuesday afternoon, according to the latest vote totals released.

seatac workerSeaTac’s Proposition 1 requiring at least a $15 minimum wage for airport workers and airport-related businesses was winning 54-46% on Election Night, but since then the vote has continually narrowed.  King County Elections’ 4:30 p.m. Tuesday vote count showed the issue was virtually tied at 50%, with only 43 votes separating the two sides — 2,683 yes votes and 2,640 no votes.

King County Elections said its next vote count would be released at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Ballots will continued to be counted and then certified Nov. 26.

Opponents said if they do lose, they won’t rule out a challenge and the issue could end up in a courtroom.

You can track the ballot count on the proposition and other King County elections here. State election results are available here and county results can be found here.

seatac-good-jobs-petitions

Courtesy: The Stand

SEATTLE — Only 43 votes separated approval or rejection of the SeaTac $15 minimum wage proposal as of Friday night, according to the latest vote totals released.

SeaTac’s Proposition 1 requiring at least a $15 minimum wage for airport workers and airport-related businesses was winning 54-46% on Election Night, but since then the vote has continually narrowed.  King County Elections’ 8:30 p.m. Friday vote count showed the issue was virtually tied at 50%, with only 43 votes separating the two sides — 2,544 yes votes and 2,501 no votes.

King County Elections said its next vote count would be released at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Ballots will continued to be counted and then certified Nov. 26.

Opponents said if they do lose, they won’t rule out a challenge and the issue could end up in a courtroom.

You can track the ballot count on the proposition and other King County elections here. State election results are available here and county results can be found here.

SEATAC — Workers are optmistic that the SeaTac “Good Jobs Initiative” will pass after jumping out to an early lead in the election. And with the latest ballot count on Wednesday night, with 3,942 votes counted, that optimism reigns with a tally of 53% to 47% supporting the initiative.

The initiative seeks to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for workers in Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and at airport-related businesses.

“It was a warm feeling. Man, I don’t know how else (to say it). It’s a feeling  I didn’t think was going to happen,” Dontreale Cain said.

Cain is still celebrating what he believes will be a victory in the vote to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. He said he’s watched hospitality and transportation workers around SeaTac struggle for years to make ends meet.

“If you have kids at home and you’re sick, or if you have to work multiple jobs, you have no time for your family — you have no time for anybody,” he said.

“It’s sending an incredible message, which is we are tired of waiting for Congress tired of waiting for corporations to deal with massive income inequality in our country,” Heather Weiner, a spokesperson for the Yes! For SeaTac campaign, said.

Organizers expect their message to spread beyond SeaTac workers. This summer in Seattle, fast food workers also rallied to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and both Mayor Mike McGinn and Ed Murray supported the idea, and we’re told the city council may take up the issue as soon as this week.

“I think Seattle is going to look at it seriously,” Weiner said. “And they`ll probably try to phase it in.”

“My biggest fear is for the employees in all the related industries,” Scott Ostrander, who opposes the proposition, said.

Ostrander runs the Cedarbrook Lodge near SeaTac and said that if the proposition passes, it could ultimately hurt workers as companies search for ways to make up for the added costs.

“There’s been talks of complete restructuring, raising of rates or fees for services… possibly elimination of services, a reduction in employee hours and downsizing staff which would include lay-offs,” he said.

“We’ve also heard that in other cities where they raised the wages,” Weiner said. “We’ve heard the sky is falling. In fact, we’ve seen the opposite happen — businesses end up saving money because they have lower turnover rates, businesses end up having greater productivity, morale is higher and they’re getting better employees because of the higher wages.”

Opponents of the proposition are optimistic they can win, since not all of the ballots have been counted. Of 12,108 mailed to voters, 3,942 were counted by 8:30 p.m. Wednesday. Ballots will continued to be counted and then verified on Nov. 26.

Opponents said if they do lose, they won’t rule out a challenge and the issue could end up in a courtroom.

You can track the ballot count on the proposition and other King County elections here. State election results are available here and county results can be found here.

seatac worker

seatac-good-jobs-petitions

Courtesy: The Stand

SEATAC, Wash. — The SeaTac ‘Good Jobs Initiative’ to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for workers in Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and at airport-related businesses was winning 54-46%, with 3,283 votes counted Tuesday night.

Under the mail-in voting system in Washington state, ballots mailed with Tuesday’s postmark are still counted once they come in. So votes will continue to be counted.

Could the small Seattle suburb of SeaTac set a national precedent?

The measure, prompted by frustration over a lack of a federal wage increase initiative, isn’t just on Washington state’s ballot as New Jersey, Alaska, South Dakota and Idaho either have it on the ballot or are working to gather signatures. 

Supporters of the proposal were celebrating Tuesday night’s election results.

“The victory in SeaTac means that workers at the Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Burger King,  and Starbucks at our airport will see their pay rise to $15/hour along with thousands of others,” said Ryan Parker, a fast food striker who works at Wendy’s in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle. “If they can do it in SeaTac, we can do it in Seattle, too.”

The proposal, if it is approved, will ensure a $15 minimum wage for more than 6,000 workers in and around the airport.

SEATTLE — State Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle, appeared to be headed for victory in Seattle’s mayoral race Tuesday night, taking a large lead — 56-43% — over Mayor Mike McGinn with about 40 percent of the votes reported.

‘We believe we won, yes,” Murray told a reporter late Tuesday night.

Indeed, The Seattle Times front-page headline Wednesday morning blared in big, bold type, “It’s Mayor Murray”

murrayThe first day’s ballot count by King County Elections had 50,938 votes for Murray and 39,124 votes for McGinn, who was seeking his second term in office.

“The votes are in,” McGinn told his supporters in what sounded at points almost like a concession speech.  But as supporters yelled no, McGinn added, “But there’s more votes. We’re not done.”

McGinn finished up his remarks by saying the last four years had made him “the happiest in the world.”

McGinn, while the incumbent, found himself in the position of underdog in this race. It could be because he’s been dogged by criticism that he’s a somewhat thorny mayor — willing to go to the mat for issues he vehemently supports — and he’s faced criticism concerning downtown safety and the police department’s use of excessive force that brought the Department of Justice to town to try to rectify the situation.

Murray, on the other hand, could be viewed as an establishment wonk who has 18 years of experience as a state lawmaker under his belt but no experience managing a large, metropolitan city, although he can lay claim to penning Referendum 74 which legalized same-sex marriage in the state. He says he will be more collaborative than McGinn, but a look at a lot of his proposed agenda items don’t differ all that much from McGinn’s — each candidate says they favor more public transit and universal kindergarten, for example, so this one is really up to the voter’s to decide who they are more comfortable with taking over the reins of the city.

Initiative 522: Losing 53-47% with 811,356 votes counted.

In what could be the most expensive political campaign in the state’s history — it’s been reported that more than $30 million has been spent and most of it came from out-of-state donors — this hotly contentious issue was shot down in California’s general election last year, and if it did pass here, Washington would lay claim to being the first state in the country to require labeling on genetically modified foods. Pundits believe I-522 will get a supportive nod on the western side of the state, but the rest of Washington, including its agricultural heartland, could easily step up and swing this to a no vote.

‘Good Jobs Initiative’:  Winning 54-46% with 3,283 votes counted in city of SeaTac. Could the small burg of SeaTac set a national precedent? It could if the initiative to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for airport and hotel workers passes. The measure, prompted by frustration over a lack of a federal wage increase initiative, isn’t just on Washington state’s ballot as New Jersey, Alaska, South Dakota and Idaho either have it on the ballot or are working to gather signatures. It’s also a main platform issue for socialist city council candidate Kshama Sawant — she’s considered an outsider in the race, but a number of low-earning workers should rally behind her calls for a higher minimum wage, public transit expansion, affordable housing and other socially driven agenda items.

For a list of the candidates and issues on the ballot, go the King County website. And hang on — the first ballot results will be released shortly after 8 p.m. Tuesday. After that you can see King County results here, county results here and statewide results here.

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