Hotel workers’ bills draw opposition at public hearing

This evening the City Council held a public hearing on four bills that Council members Mosqueda and Gonzalez have introduced as a replacement for Initiative 124. As expected, hotel workers and labor representatives showed up to urge the Council to pass the ordinances. But hotel managers and other small business owners also showed up in numbers to state their opposition to some of the provisions in the bills – particularly the health insurance mandate.

Continue reading

Mosqueda, Gonzalez introduce tweaked version of I-124, with improvements

After several hearings in which the Council members took input from both hotel employees and employers, this week Council members Mosqueda and Gonzalez are officially introducing a modified version of Initiative 124 to run through the Council’s legislative process. Their version attempts both to circumvent the issues that led to legal challenges to I-124, as well as to fix some of the most problematic aspects of the voter initiative.

Continue reading

Council to look at salvaging what it can from I-124

As of today, Initiative 124, which was approved by Seattle voters in November 2016, is nearly dead after the State Court of Appeals invalidated it for impermissibly containing multiple, unrelated subjects. But Council members Teresa Mosqueda and Debora Juarez, along with some of their colleagues, are about to take a look at passing at least parts of it into law the old-fashioned way — and fixing some of its most glaring flaws in the process.

Continue reading

Chamber of Commerce files for summary judgment in challenge to Seattle’s Uber union ordinance

Last month I wrote about the status of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s legal challenge to the City of Seattle’s ordinance authorizing Uber and Lyft drivers to engage in collective bargaining. Briefly: Last year the city tried to get the case thrown out, arguing that it had “state-action immunity.” The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed, and sent the case back down for further proceedings . In December, the City Council amended its ordinance so that it no longer authorizes collective bargaining over compensation, which was very likely to be found to be illegal price-fixing among competitors.. In response, the …

Continue reading

DOJ says SPOG contract is fine, Adley Shepherd reinstatement not a systemic issue for SPD

This afternoon, the Department of Justice submitted its brief to U.S. District Court Judge James Robart in response to his order to show cause why the terms of the city’s contract with SPOG and the recent reinstatement of Officer Adley Shepherd don’t mean that the city has fallen out of compliance with the Consent Decree. In its brief, the DOJ argued that the overturning by an arbitrator of Shepherd’s termination isn’t a sign of a systemic pattern or practice of excessive use of force. It also found that the SPOG collective bargaining agreement neither conflicts with the Consent Decree nor …

Continue reading

Uber collective-bargaining lawsuit inches forward

Since the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a split-decision last fall, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s legal challenge to Seattle’s ordinance granting collective-bargaining rights to Uber and Lyft drivers has been back in the hands of the district court. But it’s proceeding in starts and stops, with the occasional flurry of motions and other legal filings. Today a joint status report filed by the parties extends that pattern.

Continue reading