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Tag: Karen Keiser

Feb.
25th

New proposal would end fixed-benefit pensions for younger state workers; unions fighting back at hearing today

A new pension proposal from Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom would use a 401(k)-style benefit option for certain Washington state employees younger than 45 years of age. Senate Bill 5856 gets a hearing at 1:30 p.m. today in the Senate Ways and Means Committee, and the Washington Federation of State Employees began denouncing the proposal in an alert to members late Saturday.

The proposal by Tom, a fiscally conservative Democrat from the wealthy enclave Medina, appears to go further than a plan

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Feb.
21st

Senate panel explores value of state-worker wellness programs and collective bargaining for health benefits

A proposal to require state workers to participate in wellness programs as part of receiving state-subsidized health insurance plans got a hearing Thursday. Labor unions opposed both the mandate and a proposal to strip health-care benefits from the pay contracts that workers negotiate with the governor.

Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom, D-Medina, sponsored Senate Bill 5811, saying he thinks the state must get a handle on health costs triggered by smoking and obesity. In testimony he cited King County’s well-regarded program, which Gov. Jay Inslee cited on the campaign trail last year, as an example of where the state should

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