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Tag: State Government


Inslee names five more to Cabinet – three are promotions from other state agency positions

Gov.-elect Jay Inslee introduced five more members of his growing Cabinet today, announcing new agency heads for the departments of Social and Health Services, Retirement Systems, Labor and Industries, Employment Security and Veterans Affairs. He also told reporters at the Associated Press legislative forum he still thinks he can stick by his no-new-taxes pledge - although he does think closing tax loopholes is an option.

The personnel moves are the latest in a series of recent hires by Inslee, a Democrat – as reported here and here. Three of the five newest hires are promotions of people currently working in state agencies. Inslee had said in his campaign he would look for people outside state government and bring new perspectives to agencies.

The one new hire who is a true outsider to state government is Dale Pienecke, who will take over as Employment Security commissioner. Pienecke is described as a chief executive at Giddens Industries, an Everett based aerospace firm who was past chairman of the Snohomish County Workforce Development group.

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Federation sues to block state furloughs

The Washington Federation of State Employees has filed suit to block state government’s plan to temporarily lay off upward of a third of state workers on 10 separate days over the next year. It says it has a court hearing next Friday, July 2, to consider its request for an injunction blocking furloughs of state workers, which is supposed to save $38 million in general-fund payroll and about $35 million from other accounts.

Here is an excerpt of what the federation is saying about its action:

The lawsuit alleges, in part, that the furlough plan violates the 14th Amendment’s equal

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Latest stimulus numbers

Federal stimulus grants worth $7.4 billion were awarded to Washington State in 2009.

That’s according to Gov. Chris Gregoire today, an announcement that reflects updates from the last quarter of the year. Recipients spent more than $535 million of the money in the fourth quarter, bringing the total spent so far to nearly $1 billion.

Pierce County agencies and companies have received $300.9 million.

Large shares include $1 billion for King County, $235 million for Spokane County, $214 million for Yakima County, $3.5 billion for Benton County – mostly for cleaning up the Hanford nuclear reservation – and $484 million

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Crucial state revenue forecast comes next week

I’m back from a week’s vacation and catching up on my e-mail and practicing with this new blogging software we had installed in my absence. So, bear with me.

I see there was an economic review while I was gone. It’s dated Sept. 4. That’s when the state’s chief economist, Arun Raha, takes a look at Washington’s and the nation’s economies to see how we’re doing. Next week, on Sept. 17, Raha will take a look at how the economy is expected to affect state tax collections.

Raha strikes me as a “the glass is half full AND the glass

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