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Tag: Michael Baumgartner


Washington Roundtable lays out ‘skills gap’ report showing need to fill 25,000 jobs

Washington state lost more than 200,000 jobs during the Great Recession, and as the state keeps bouncing back there are signs Washington has a mismatch between the skills of the workforce and the jobs that are opening up. A new report from the Washington Roundtable, which is made up of business executives, says the region’s business community has 25,000 new jobs it is in acute need of people to fill them.

All told, 20,000 or about 80 percent of the total jobs deemed to have “acute” skills gaps are in nursing or computer science fields. A job opening is considered

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‘Main Street’ group organizes letter to lawmakers from small business owners that favor new state revenues

Advocates of an increase in state revenues brought a few small-business owners to the Capitol Monday to ask lawmakers to close tax “loopholes.” Of course leaders of the left-of-center Our Economic Future coalition and Main Street Alliance, who organized the event, couldn’t specify which tax breaks they consider loopholes.

Everyone is apparently waiting for Gov. Jay Inslee to lay out his package of revenue ideas for narrowing the state budget shortfall and meeting the state’s obligations for funding K-12 public schools.

Up to now, the Democratic governor has had trouble putting his finger on tax breaks to repeal. But aides

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Sen. Baumgartner pushes back at Supreme Court’s ruling on taxes, files bill to reduce bench from 9 justices to 5


Republican Sen. Michael Baumgartner took a slap at the state Supreme Court today, one week after the court invalidated a two-thirds super-majority for tax increases on grounds it  is unconstitutional limit on legislative powers. His proposal, Senate Bill 5867, would shrink the court from nine members to five, force the judges to draw lots to decide who loses a job. And it would, in Baumgartner’s view, save $3 million over the next biennium that can be put to improving K-12 public schools.

He may have to convince people, but no, he’s not kidding.

Rachel LaCorte of The Associated

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State IT needs piling up; requests could top $400M

My Sunday report about the rent coming due on the State Data Center is only the latest installment in a long-running story. But the request that lawmakers approve a $25.1 million subsidy to cover least payments on the $255 million project is just a fraction of the information technology requests going to lawmakers this year.

In recent testimony before House and Senate budget committees, the state’s new chief information officer Michael Cockrill presented an overview suggesting there are close to $400 million in new spending requests for IT. Projects on the list are

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