LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Vote NO on SeaTac Prop. 1

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, written by a Reader. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The SeaTac Blog nor its staff:]

Vote NO on SeaTac Prop. 1

We’ve all heard the expression: “Read the bill.” SeaTac Proposition 1 is 9 pages of wage and employment standards that very much resemble a union contract.

This is a vote on whether the city should act as a union and would put the city between the employee and the employer. The City Manager would be responsible for establishing the minimum wage for the year and then monitoring and auditing private business. The City Attorney would represent over 6000 employees in any grievance against employers, at considerable taxpayer expense – free legal services for 6000 covered employees with no risk of having to pay attorney’s fees if the claim is unfounded.

It would create different classes of employees based on arbitrary thresholds; such as number of employees or number of hotel rooms. Two workers performing the same task at different companies would get significantly different pay, benefits, and city representation.

This establishes pay and benefits, not based on merit, but on the vote of the people. It does not take into account the profitability of the business, employee performance, employee qualifications, or other dynamic market forces.

This proposition also has numerous clauses that are unclear and the city does not have the authority to amend it. We can’t have a discussion and then modify the language. We have to accept or reject it exactly as it is written.

Proposition 1 is poorly written with unclear mandates, it would have the city act as a union, offers free legal services to select private employees, creates different classes of employees, creates wage and benefits that do not coincide with employee qualifications and performance and would impose a heavy burden on taxpayers.

This is not good policy.

Please join me in voting NO on Proposition 1 so that we can get back to creating a business friendly city, creating more jobs, and moving our city forward.

Daryl Tapio
SeaTac Resident, Business Owner
Chair, SeaTac Planning Commission

[Have an opinion or concern you’d like to share with our Readers? Please send us your Letter to the Editor via email. Include your full name, please remain civil and, pending our review, we’ll most likely publish it.]


9 Responses to “LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Vote NO on SeaTac Prop. 1”
  1. Kathie Brave says:

    I am absolutey shocked that people think this would be a good idea. First, they must not have read the entire bill. Second, if they did and still think it’s a good thing, they are not getting it. The city should have nothing to do with this. It should be between the workers, the union and their employers. But, aside from that, it won’t work. Hours will be cut, people will be laid off, employers won’t add on or build. In the long run it will hurt those who are actually thinking this will help them. I feel sorry for them when they realize they messed up. And I feel sorry for those of us in SeaTac when we realize someone, partially the city, messed up. It will not help our town, only hurt and will cost us a lot of money to monitor. I can’t imagine voting for a bill that the city can’t even tell us how much it will cost the city. Oh, that’s right, the people behind this really don’t care.

  2. Rebecca I says:

    Kathie –
    I agree with most of your thoughts. I’m wondering why you think that the citizens will realize that the city messed up? Do you mean select city counsel members who are backing the initiative?

    I also sense anger that “the city can’t even tell us how much it will cost”. The city would have to spend resources to plan how they would implement this stupid law to be able to answer that question. Without providing us a $ figure, I sense you know that enforcing this law will cost the city a significant amount of money. The initiative doesn’t provide income to the city to offset this expense. To balance the budget the city will eventually have to cut services to residents. Businesses will be driven out of the city as they won’t be able to compete. Residents will have no choice but to spend their dollars outside the city. As a result the income to the city will decrease. Those of us who own our homes will experience continued declining value.

    And you are 99% correct when you say the people behind this really don’t care. The “people” behind this are the unions. Initiatives are supposed to brought “by the people”. Instead, the labor unions are preying on the poverty stricken people in our community by telling them partial truths that make this law seem like a good idea.

  3. Doris Cassan says:

    Proposition 1 was not written by the citizens, employees, employers, or the City of SeaTac. It was written by a law firm on behalf of Occupy Seattle and other similar groups, based outside the City of SeaTac.

    If one only reads the media headlines, “living wage” it sounds sensible. However, the devil is in the details, the document contains nine pages. Every voter should be required to read it in its entirety before voting. Mr. Tapio, above, has discussed but a few of the onerous requirements proposed by Proposition 1.

    One of the biggest issues for our company is the hiring mandate. No longer would we be able to recruit and choose employees that are compatible with our existing personnel. We would be forced to hire employees from a list without any consideration of our individual business model and culture. Those fresh young men and women in our neighborhoods would be eliminated for consideration. Is that how we wish to treat our local youth?

    This proposition pits employees, employers and the city against each other. The City should focus on creating an environment whereby citizens, employees and employers can be successful.

    Vote NO on Proposition 1.

  4. Clyde Hill says:

    For one recent example where local government policy interfered with private business and failed, look to Burien and the fight between Meal Makers and the Burien Town Center. After a two year legal battle which undoubtedly caused the business and land owners to spend thousands of dollars defending their right to continue operating a 27 year old business, Burien reached the decision to enact eminent domain to clearing the way for the City of Burien to partner with a developer to build private residences encircling a public space. The structure was immediately bulldozed and the lot has now sat empty since 2007. My point is that Government has a responsibility to govern, manage and protect the right for its citizens, provide essential services – none of which should include private land developer or acting as a organized union representative for a select few laborers. Keep the taxpayers (and the city) out of this private business affair by voting NO to Proposition 1.

    Additional Reference Material:

  5. Earl Gipson says:

    The unions (SEIU, Teamsters, whatever) have done nothing for the residents of SeaTac and continue to hammer us to get to their targets at the airport. They purchased three of our Council members in the 2011 election and now want to hammer our residents with unemployment via this misguided Proposition.

    The baggage handlers had a union, the unions overplayed their hand, and got 400 employees thrown out of work. Enter Menzies and other subcontractors to fill the void and fill it they did. Since the employers don’t even want to deal with this grief the unions now want the Citizens of SeaTac to pay for their mistakes with our tax dollars and nothing to show for it except exiting businesses, revenue reduction, and the need for more social services. This is commonly known as a slum of which some Council Members and unions seem to want to turn SeaTac into. We are on our way to a slum anyway from other political decisions (Julia Patterson comes to mind for some reason) and they seem to want to speed the process.

    This Proposition has ZERO benefit to the Citizens of SeaTac and a HUGE detriment. This is all at the hands of people/organizations that have their own agendas at heart and have used manipulation, money, and lies to coerce some members of the Council, outside political idiots, and Citizens into supporting this.

    Hopefully our SeaTac Citizenry will see the folly of this Proposition and vote NO.

  6. Michael T Kovacs says:

    Moron = A person who is notably stupid or lacking in good judgement. Example: All Unions, Adam Smith, Dow Constatine, Julia Patterson, Dave Upthegrove, Unelected Mayor Tony Anderson, Unelected Deputy Mayor Mia Gregerson, Dave Bush, Barry Ladenberg.

    Morons like the examples mentioned above will enhance and create more of this in SeaTac:

    Slum = A thickly populated, run-down, squalid part of a city, inhabitated by poor people.

  7. The citizens of SeaTac are not going to profit by this proposition, furthermore the minimum wage was originally for high school and college students so they could help pay for their schooling. It was not meant as a way of life Furthermore the costs that Proposition 1 will generate will be passed on to the consumer..

  8. Janice Taylor says:

    Those of us against this proposition can talk facts all we want. That’s not going to defeat it. All the workers gaining from it hear is “$15, $15, $15.” Like somehow that number will magically fix all their problems. and they have the stars in their eyes. Time to hit back emotionally.

    Hey, baggage worker, how do you like some union guys and smug politicians telling you you are too dense to be anything more than a baggage handler? That since you obviously have no motivation to better yourself, they’ll pay for your vote, and it was pretty cheap and easy to do? That they’ll take their union dues out of your check and you’ll see nothing in return? That in a few years they will throw you under the bus like they did workers who had your jobs in 2005? (Hey, they got their money and political favors, do you really think they care about you?)

    And you folks who get tips? Expect a lot less. At $15 per hour, cabbie, you darn well better open my door for me and not grumble because I live only five miles from the airport, then expect a tip. Wait people, at $15 per hour, I expect more than having my lunch plopped in front of me to never see you again. Some of us got through college waiting at $2/hr plus tips, and grew into great tippers. But we’re also tough customers, so you better up your game. Plus, now that you’re making $15/hr, you don’t need my tips.

    And let’s delve into the supporters, as per the 8-page union paid flyer I got in the mail this week: Politicians: You’re not supporting this out of the goodness of your hearts. You are paying off favors and buying votes. It pisses me off that you are okay with breaking state and local laws to get this measure on the ballot. You knew you couldn’t do it fairly, so you cheated. Great message. Must be nice to be so above the rest of us. You Seatac businesses supporting this: Since you’re not affected by the pay increase, you opinion doesn’t count. It’s easy to spend other people’s money. And my favorite “Trusted Organizations”: I trust you as far as I can throw you. It’s all about money, power and prestige for you. Can you say “I’m a corporate Kardashian, all make up and no substance?”

    So, a little emotion to spice up all the facts. Maybe, just maybe it will cause some people to actually THINK about what they are voting on, and the ramifications.

  9. Doris Cassan says:

    Janice, your commits are so “right on.”

    The politicians should have read every word of the Proposition prior to supporting it. If they had not read it, shame on them. If they had read it and support it, this type of intrusion into the day to day operation of private enterprises is the beginning of a government take over of American businesses. As Ms. Taylor said above about the politicians, buying votes and creating more power for you, not power for the people. What will be next?

    And every voter should be required to read it prior to voting. I would think individual voters would not want government to tell them how he or she should spend their money or how to live their day to day life. If the government can tell companies, sure as heck, individuals are next.