News roundup: warming up the engine

As we approach the first week of substantive legislative business for the City Council, you can feel the engine warming up: the press is starting to report on bills that will be discussed in the coming week. Plus, the national media continues to report on recent progressive legislation in Seattle.

The Seattle Times reports that the Council will vote to approve contracts with four unions representing city employees. The new contract locks in pay increases over the next few years, but also makes some moderate changes to the defined-benefit retirement plan for those employees.

Puget Sound Business Journal quotes Council member Mike O’Brien on the reasons for the city’s legislation allowing Uber and Lyft drivers to unionize. Yes! magazine looks at why this is so critical for immigrant drivers.

Earlier this week, the EPA issued a report definitively linking one particular neonicotinoid pesticide to the decline in bee populations. The Stranger points out that Seattle is ahead of the game, having banned neonicotinoids last year.

The Daily Beast highlights Seattle recently-enacted tax on guns and ammunition as a means to raise money to reduce gun violence.¬† Council member Tim Burgess, the legislation’s sponsor, is quoted.