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Votes #1 and #2 are
weighted to count for 50% of the overall voting record.
1. EHB 2123 -- Workers’ compensation -- Weighted vote, counts as 28% of 2011 record (the share of premiums that workers pay into the system) -- Fundamentally changes our safety net for injured workers, incentivizes employers to aggressively negotiate lower benefits and invites private insurers into our state by allowing buyouts for workers over 55 (50 by 2016). Freezes benefit COLAs for a year, requires permanent total disability offsets. Right vote: NO. (Passed 35-12, May 23.)
2. ESSB 5931 -- Contracting out state services -- Weighted vote, counts as 22% of total 2011 vote -- Consolidates four agencies into a Department of Enterprise Services, but promotes privatization of its services and explicitly prohibits state employees from competing to maintain their work. Right vote: NO. (Passed 31-15, May 25.)
3. SSB 5801 -- Quality medical care for injured workers -- Expands our Centers for Occupational Health Education and creates a provider network with incentives and requirements that practitioners use best practices. Right vote: YES. (Passed 48-0, Feb. 24.)
4. 2SSB 5662 -- Reciprocal bid preference -- Prioritizes in-state workers on public works projects when bidding against contractors from states with in-state preferences. Right vote: YES. (Passed 32-13, Mar. 3.)
5. ESB 5566 -- Injured worker buyouts -- Incentivizes employers to aggressively negotiate lower benefits by allowing buyouts for all injured workers. Right vote: NO. (Passed 34-15, Mar. 5.)
6. ESSB 5068 -- Injury prevention/abatement on appeal -- Makes Washington the 2nd state to require businesses cited for serious safety hazards to fix them, including when they are appealing a citation. Right vote: YES. (Passed 47-2, Mar. 5.)
7. 2ESHB 1701 (Holmquist Newbry amendment) -- Employee misclassification -- Increasing penalties for construction contractors that misclassify employees as independent contractors to avoid paying unemployment and workers’ comp premiums. This amendment exempted almost all contractors. Right vote: NO. (Passed 25-24, Apr. 4.)
8. SSJR 8215 -- Constitutional amendment on debt limit -- Would have dramatically decreased capitol budget projects and our ability to create needed building and construction trade jobs. Right vote: NO. (Passed 39-3, Apr. 26.)
9. 2ESSB 5742 -- Ferry system reforms -- Funds ferry construction and sets management standards, but included labor-opposed provisions to effectively eliminate the Marine Employees Commission and decertify the ferry captains’ union. Right vote: NO. (Passed 34-10, May 12.)
10. ESHB 1497 -- Capital Budget -- The 2011-13 budget creating some 51,000 desperately needed construction jobs. It authorizes $1.6 billion in new projects from sources other than bond proceeds. Right vote=YES. Passed 47-0, 5/25.
more details and information about these bills,
Copyright © 2011 Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO