Features

Democrats Add Performance Measures To Boeing Tax Breaks

Is Washington state getting its money’s worth from more than $1 billion in tax breaks given to aerospace industry giant Boeing? Some Democratic lawmakers in Olympia are determined to find out.

Washington State Sets Pace For Cybersecurity Initiatives Across Country-Hudgins Announces Legislation

House Hearings Last Week Representative Hudgins Announces Cyber Security Bill for 2015 Evidently Washington State’s IT platforms have little downside regarding cybersecurity issues. Department of Licensing (largest amount of citizen data) has major revisions underway, and our overall digital platforms must be safe because there was no mention of security, breach threats or offensive programs […]

Dozens of Protesters Rally At The Capitol, Demand $15 Minimum Wage

Minimum wage earners in Washington state are due for a 15-cent pay raise come January — to $9.47 an hour, the highest state minimum wage in the nation — but more than 100 workers who rallied on the steps of the Capitol Thursday agreed that’s not enough. They were among thousands who rallied in large […]

Cybersecurity: Public Sector’s Growing Concerns and Washington’s Growing Industry: Part 1

Target, Home Depot, K-Mart and Neiman Marcus all fell victim to hackers in the last year, resulting in hundreds of millions of compromised accounts. Public sector security breaches are recently taking their place next to Target on the evening news. Late last month, news reports broke of thousands of leaked student files from the Seattle […]

Inslee Promotes Electric Cars to Tackle Pollution

Gov. Jay Inslee wants to extend a sales tax break for electric vehicles and explore giving them access to car pool lanes. If the break is extended, it would mean a nearly $13 million hit in tax revenues in fiscal year 2016, and $17 million in 2017, according to most recent estimates by the Department of Revenue.

Worker Comp Rates To Go Up .8% in ’15, Smaller Than Originally Predicted

After years of roller-coaster hikes and dips in worker compensation rates, the Department of Labor & Industries announced Tuesday that the statewide average rates for next year will increase a modest .8 percent — smaller than the 1.8 percent hike proposed in September.

About That Audit: Business, Tax Collectors Talk Ideas For Resolving Appeals Issues

The Association of Washington Business (AWB) has had concerns about the Department of Revenue’s (DOR’s) internal appeal system for years, including basic questions of transparency, said Amber Carter, director of governmental affairs for tax and fiscal policy at the AWB.

Q&A With Gil Brewer, Senior Director of Tax Policy For DOR

Gil Brewer is senior director of tax policy at the Department of Revenue (DOR). He provided an interview to the Washington State Wire for a story about criticisms that the agency’s appeals division was “rubber stamping” decisions against the taxpayer. Brewer explains that the internal – and low-cost – appeals process is not designed to […]

Q&A With David Dressel, Former DOR Administrative Law Judge

Dave Dressel worked as an administrative law judge at the Department of Revenue (DOR) for 27 years before retiring in 2012. On his last day he sent an email criticizing the agency for stacking the odds against the taxpayer and calling the system an “affront to due process.” The Washington State Wire had an opportunity […]