Extra Fizz: Minimum Wage, Metro, and Murray
Extra Fizz: Minimum Wage, Metro, Murray, and More.
1. Mayor Ed Murray said yesterday that he would know by today whether the income group would continue to "proceed" toward an agreement.
Today, his spokesman Jeff Reading told PubliCola brusquely that Murray would "have some kind of message" about his decision later today.
2. Friends of Transit, a group of transit proponents led by pro-subway activist Ben Schiendelman, filed a city initiative today that would fund bus service in Seattle with a new six-year property tax of 22 cents per $1,000 of home valuation. The initiative defines "Seattle routes" as "Metro routes [including the Seattle Streetcar] that deliver at least 80% of their Annual Revenue Hours within the city limits of Seattle." The city would collect the revenues and then buy service hours from Metro.
Yesterday, King County Metro general manager Kevin Desmond expressed skepticism about Friends of Transit's proposal, pointing out that many Metro routes link commuters between Seattle and its suburbs because Metro is a regional agency.
"Just thinking from the perspective of one city or another—that's not the way a regional transit system works," Desmond said.
3. Speaking of Schiendelman, he got into a convoluted battle with Mayor Murray on Murray's personal Facebook page over a news story about city police accountability director Pierce Murphy, who was asked to leave the scene of an officer-involved shooting by Seattle Police Department officers at the scene. Schiendelman (a major supporter of former mayor Mike McGinn, whom Murray defeated), wrote, "The joke's on the voters."
Here's Murray's response:
More of Murray's multi-part diatribe here.
4. The OneSeattle Coalition, a group of businesses that opposes elements of the $15 minimum wage proposal currently being hotly negotiated by Mayor Ed Murray's income inequality advisory committee, sent out a statement today denouncing a parody web site, 1seattle.org, that uses OneSeattle's logo.
The site claims facetiously that minimum-wage workers in Seattle are already making $15 an hour, once "benefits" like food discounts (which vary "depending on girth"), time spent texting, and mandatory breaks are taken into account. It also brags that the group is proudly supported by "big businesses" like McDonald's and Yum! Brands.
"Free speech is a wonderful thing," the statement, from OneSeattle spokesman Alex Fryer, says. "But using a logo or photograph for the purposes of deception is of course against Twitter policy and other laws of the land." We have a message out to Fryer to see if OneSeattle plans to pursue legal action.
The parody site fooled at least one reporter: The Seattle Times' Lynn Thompson, who wrote, "Business leaders aren’t arguing with the $15-an-hour goal. In fact, the OneSeattle website calls the current state minimum wage of $9.32 'undeniably less than it costs to support yourself.'" The paper later printed a correction.
Here's OneSeattle's real web site.