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Category: Employment


Pentagon budget steers $5.5 billion to Evergreen State for military construction, new jets

Spending on military construction in Washington State would slow under the Defense Department’s 2014 budget request, but continue to steer hundreds of millions of dollars toward projects around the Puget Sound.

The proposed budget sets aside $324 million for new work at military bases in the region, down from $581 million last year.

The request includes $144 million for air field improvements that would benefit a new Army helicopter brigade at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and another $85 million to help the Navy prepare to move 28 Boeing-made submarine-hunting jets to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.

The budget also continues funding

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JBLM civilians fear hard choices at home if plan for Pentagon furloughs unfolds

Tammy Grice of Tacoma says forced furloughs for Defense Department civilian workers will “sink my family’s ship.” Shes a daycare worker at Joint Base Lewis-Mcchord.

Anxiety is rising among the civilian workforce at Joint Base Lewis-McChord that stands to lose up to a fifth of its pay this year to furloughs if Congress fails to prevent forced federal budget cuts this month, a panel of workers told Sen. Patty Murray on Wednesday.

“This is going to destroy my entire family,” said Matt Thompson, 47, of Roy. He’s a Lewis-McChord mechanic supporting a family of five

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Army bracing for budget cuts: Training, child care and more to be impacted by April

Forced Army budget cuts will show themselves in military communities like the South Sound in slashed paychecks to furloughed employees and reduced opportunities for private companies to work on bases, senior Army officers said in a Wednesday news conference.

“The impact will be immediate and long lasting,” said Brig. Gen. Curt Rauhut, who oversees the Army’s budget for construction, family programs and other installation support services.

He joined two other officers in laying out scenarios they expect if Congress fails to avert the $1.2 trillion budget sequester that is expected to begin Friday. About $85 billion of that sum would

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Big days for job seeking veterans: JBLM holds one fair Thursday; Hire America’s Heroes set for Friday

One last reminder: The annual Hire America’s Heroes job fair at Safeco Field in Seattle is set for Friday. You can register here, or walk in starting at 8 a.m.

Today, we attended a college and apprenticeship fair for soldiers and Army spouses at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. We found hundreds of soldiers gathering information for the plans they’re making to leave the military down the road.

Some were just beginning their military careers. They were dabbling and making long-range plans. “When I’ll get out, I’ll be fine,” said Spc. Kaleel Salmon, 20.

We met other soldiers who know when they’re

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Cantwell in Tacoma today to promote tax credits for hiring veterans

Sen. Maria Cantwell is in Tacoma today to promote a bill that would provide tax credits to businesses that hire veterans.

She’s speaking this afternoon at J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding, a growing business that says veterans make up 40 percent of its payroll.

Cantwell is promoting an extension of the Returning Heroes and Wounded Heroes Work Opportunity Tax Credits through 2013. According to her office, the bill gives businesses a tax credit of up to $9,600 for each qualified veteran they hire. The credits are due to expire at the end of this year.

Her office cited figures from the Washington

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State Lottery hosting fall raffle to support veterans’ grants

Helping veterans can be as easy as buying a raffle ticket this fall.

The state Lottery Commission is launching a “Hometown Heroes” raffle Monday to pump money into a program that delivers small grants to veterans in need of cash as they look for work in the civilian world.

Tickets cost $10, and they’ll be available at markets and convenience stores that sell lottery tickets through Nov. 10 – unless the 300,000 raffle tickets move quickly.

“This is going to be a quick sellout,” said Bill Hanson, director of the state Lottery. “Regardless of what the public may think about

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Seattle nonprofit hosts career day for South Sound veterans Friday at Cheney Stadium

South Sound veterans and service members can scope out the labor market Friday at a Hire America’s Heroes career day at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma.

The Seattle-based group aims to connect vets with work in the private sector once they’ve decided to leave the military. It’s bringing Alaska Airlines, Amazon, Boeing, Puget Sound Energy, Starbucks and a mix of other companies to the Tacoma baseball stadium.

The event is free to service members and early birds can pick up free tickets to Friday night’s Tacoma Rainiers game. You can register for the event here.

Hire America’s Heroes has

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Governor signs bills giving veterans a leg up in job hunt

Veterans might have an easier time finding work after they leave the military under a couple of laws Gov. Chris Gregoire signed over the past week.

One signed yesterday allows private employers to establish preferences for applicants with military experience.

“As our veterans return from their duties overseas, it’s important for them to be reintegrated back into our communities. Employment can be a critical vehicle for this transition,” said the bill’s author, Jay Rodne, R-North Bend. “House Bill 1432 simply permits employers to give veterans preference in employment decisions, but it’s not a requirement. This will provide veterans

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