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John Engber on rule-making 3-10-17

 Retail Industry Coalition of Seattle 

The Washington Retail Association has expanded its outreach with a new emphasis on Seattle politics and the debates and decisions of the City Council. The laws and regulations approved at City Hall not only affect hundreds of retailers across the city.

Seattle ideas often migrate to other cities including our home base in Olympia, where the State Legislature debates financial impacts that cover the entire state. The ideas cover everything from wages, to scheduling, hiring and offering an expanding list of employee benefits.

Starting this year, the Washington Retail Association will be watching the new ideas affecting retailers that come from City Hall and will track developments with regular updates on this website. We also invite you to contact our Seattle lobbyist, John Engber (contact info) or Tammie Hetrick, WRA’s Senior Vice President of Retail Services, with any questions or concerns.

We know you’re busy with little time to follow the City Council, so, consider yourselves represented at City Hall. When we can, we will advocate on your behalf.

Email RICS Now!

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RICS Twitter Feed

RICSeattle The Seattle Soda Tax will hurt the very communities it wants to help. #keepseattlelivable #noseattlesodatax https://t.co/vkT7vDOP2k
RICSeattle RT @WazzusJobu: This soda tax proposal by Seattle is stupid. It's going to affect the poor people more than help them.
RICSeattle RT @AJHonore: A soda tax is a #regressive #tax on the Poor and Working Classes of #Seattle. (Obviously, if you are anti-tax you are not ant…
RICSeattle RT @NoSeattleBevTax: A bevtax presents another challenge to Seattle’s small biz – harming job creators & family livelihoods across the city…
RICSeattle RT @NoSeattleBevTax: An unfair bevtax will force families living paycheck to paycheck OUT of Seattle. Stand up & speak out: https://t.co/qG

John Engber Testifies at CRUEDA meeting on 3-14-17

City of Seattle Scheduling Ordinance Webinar

 (Part 2) 60 minutes

Seattle’s Secure Scheduling Ordinance: What Covered Employers Must Do to Prepare Now
June 6, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. PST


Final rules for the Seattle Secure Scheduling Ordinance have been published. Now is the time for covered employers — large retailers and restaurants with 500 employees — to undertake a major overhaul to their scheduling practices before the law’s effective date of July 1, 2017.

Please join Lane Powell and Washington Retail Association for Part 2 of our two-part webinar series surrounding Seattle’s Secure Scheduling Ordinance on Tuesday, June 6, from 10:30-11:30 a.m. PST to find out how you can prepare and ensure compliance with the new rules.


Top Issues In Seattle

On Sept. 19, 2016, the Seattle City Council approved a restrictive scheduling ordinance applying to some retailers and restaurants by a 9 to 0 vote. The ordinance requires employers to post work schedules two weeks in advance and levies fines for violations. The Washington Retail Association opposed the ordinance and warned that it would harm employees by reducing available work hours and leaving workers with more restrictive schedules that would be harder to adjust for emergencies or other conflicts outside of work. The law will apply to large retailers with 500 or more employees and to full-service restaurants with both 500 or more employees and 40 or more locations nationwide. It does not cover smaller companies or other industries. MORE >>>

Seattle Businesses want good employees and to reward them with fair wages to meet their needs. But wild swings in the minimum wage and pockets of wages much higher than the statewide minimum create serious financial challenges for retailers with multiple store locations and endanger the livelihoods of stores, especially small businesses in rural locations.  Deserving workers are entitled to earn as much as the market will allow. But the businesses that write the paychecks have to first survive before the raises can be paid. MORE >>>

Paid Sick Leave



WRA opposes government-imposed leave mandates that rob businesses of their flexibility to address specific circumstances among employees. Such mandates threaten productivity and impose burdensome costs that hit small businesses especially hard and creates a great disadvantage for them. Last year, the Washington Research Council published a brief warning that imposing paid sick leave threatens many businesses by making them less competitive with others not facing the same regulation. MORE >>>

Recent RICS Posts

May 22, 2017 RICS Monthly Newsletter

      May 22, 2017   Members of the Retail Industry Coalition of Seattle, Welcome to the first RICS monthly newsletter! Thanks to all of you for joining the conversation on how policies in City Hall are affecting local retailers. Below is an update...

WRA hosts June 6 webinar on Seattle scheduling ordinance

WRA is hosting a June webinar with the law firm Lane Powell to cover how retailers must prepare for Seattle’s new scheduling ordinance that takes effect on July 1, 2017. The one-hour presentation will begin at 10:30 a.m., PST. Final rules for the ordinance have been...

Seattle scheduling study has problems

By Jan Teague, President/CEO   We recently told you about a study of retail impacts from Seattle labor practices on scheduling.  Don’t participate in the study.  I repeat, don’t participate in the study.  Here is why.  It’s being done by advocates in support of...

Seattle Secure Scheduling Ordinance Study Letter

David Jones, Auditor P.O. Box 94729 Seattle, WA 98124-4729 May 4, 2017   Dear Mr. Jones: Our organizations and members have recently been contacted by a research assistant at the University of Chicago on behalf of Professor Susan Lambert and Professor Anna...

Get ready to debate a tax on certain drinks in Seattle

May 3rd, 2017 Seattle City Council Hearing for imposing a tax on sweetened beverages By Jim Szymanski Some retailers in Seattle should prepare for debate on a possible tax to be imposed on various diet and non-diet soda and energy drinks. Mayor Ed Murray is expected...

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