Business Climate

WPC's Center for Small Business focuses on improving Washington's small business climate by working closely with business owners and policymakers. The Center provides accurate information and analysis on the state's regulatory climate, tax structure, health insurance systems, and more.

Business Climate Blog

SeaTac’s $15 Minimum Wage Is Hurting the Workers It Is Supposed to Help

May 29, 2014 in Blog

The law of unintended consequences is an economic idiom warning that the intervention of people and government in economic systems almost always has effects that are unanticipated and often undesirable.

Seattle’s $15 Minimum Wage Not in Effect, But Already Killing Jobs

May 22, 2014 in Blog

It seems Seattle’s anti-business policies are taking their toll on the city’s small businesses.   And while the city’s most controversial policy, a proposed $15 minimum wage, has not been passed yet, it is already having a chilling affect on jobs.

Voters in Switzerland Reject Minimum Wage Over Concerns It Would Cripple Economy

May 21, 2014 in Blog

Critics of the United States often say we should follow the progressive policies of European nations.  One progressive policy many European countries have is no minimum wage.  In addition, the progressive leaders of the European Union have not enacted an EU-wide minimum wage law.

Liberal Think Tank Says Obamacare Employer Mandate is "Regressive" and Should Be Scrapped

May 14, 2014 in Blog

At WPC’s annual Health Care Conference yesterday, panels of experts discussed the impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on individuals, employers, insurers and providers.  A common theme throughout the presentations and Q&A sessions centered on the uncertainty of how employers will respond once the controversial employer mandate begins to take effect next year.

The controversy, confusion and uncertainty over the new requirements has prompted the Obama Administration to delay implementation of the employer mandate and soften requirements during the first year.

National Small Business Week Proclamation Touts Obama Administration’s Accomplishments More Than Small Businesses'

May 12, 2014 in Blog

Today is the start of National Small Business Week, whereby government officials pay the usual platitudes to small businesses and their importance to our nation’s economy.  Throughout the week, the Small Business Administration (SBA) will hold events and festivities in cities around the country to celebrate the small business owners who drive innovation and create jobs.

New Study Reveals High Costs and Job Losses With Seattle’s $15 Minimum Wage

May 9, 2014 in Blog

A new, independent study from a Seattle economist reveals the impact of a $15 minimum wage in Seattle may be much greater than indicated in a University of Washington study requested and funded by the Seattle City Council.

Union Exempted From Minimum Wage Initiative

April 28, 2014 in Blog

The organization behind the push for a $15 minimum wage in Seattle has announced it will begin collecting signatures to put a city charter amendment mandating the high wage on the ballot.  The group, 15 Now, needs 30,957 signatures to qualify the measure for the November ballot.

Is the Momentum for a $15 Minimum Wage Ebbing?

April 25, 2014 in Blog

When voters approved an ordinance requiring certain employers in the City of SeaTac to pay a $15 minimum wage last year, supporters celebrated the victory and vowed to build on the momentum.  Seattle was quickly marked the next target, and city leaders eagerly jumped on the bandwagon, promising to increase the minimum wage for at least some workers in the city to $15.

Economic Outlook for Washington Continues to Slide

April 18, 2014 in Blog

A new report ranking the economic competitiveness in the 50 states shows that while Washington’s economic performance over the past ten years (2002-2012) has been better than most states, the future looks grim.  

Do As We Say, Not as We Do

April 17, 2014 in Blog

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz recently warned an increase in the minimum wage could result in a reduction in the company’s famously generous employee benefits.  Schultz argues minimum wages should take into consideration the “total compensation” an employee receives, which in the case of Starbucks employees includes full health coverage, free food, bus passes, 401K, education assistance, stock rewards, bonuses and more—even for part-time workers.