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 & Occupation Tax Reform, Part II

August 2, 2008 in Publications

In order for a state to attract new businesses or encourage current businesses within the state to expand, lawmakers must offer a competitive tax system – one that incorporates many of the responsible principles such as transparency, simplicity, neutrality and more, as laid out in Part I of this series.

Washington's Business Climate Is All Over The Map

July 17, 2008 in Publications

Is Washington state truly friendly to businesses? It depends on whom you ask. Some reports say Washington has a favorable business climate, yet other measures show our state isn’t anywhere near the top end of business-friendly states. Which are correct? There is no definitive answer, but examining the criteria used by the different reports might shed some light on this controversial subject.

How Incentives to Cheat Undermine Cap‐and‐Trade

June 2, 2008 in Publications

Imagine buying a car only to find it was a lemon. You would probably go back to the seller in an effort to get your money back. Contract and consumer protection laws are set up to mediate this relationship between buyer and seller. In most cases the power of one balances the other creating fair transactions that are mutually beneficial.

Business & Occupation Tax Reform, Part I

June 2, 2008 in Publications

The Oxford American Dictionary defines “tax” as, “a sum of money to be paid by people or business firms to a government, to be used for public purposes.”

Today, taxes are used to pay for public goods such as schools, roads, airports, utilities, museums, social work, sports, and more.

Washington Policy Center Comments on WAC 296‐62‐095 – Heat‐related Illness Rule

April 1, 2008 in Publications

The heat‐related illness (HRI) administrative code (WAC 296‐62‐095) is a regulation that still has several holes in it and could cause confusion among small businesses and employers.

This Session, There’s a Little Something for Everyone

March 16, 2008 in Publications

Looking back can give one a sense of pessimism or optimism. On one hand you can observe failures; on the other hand you can see room for improvement and discern a productive plan for the future.

Lawmakers Have Time To Fix Feel-Good, Do-Nothing Legislation

January 16, 2008 in Publications

After several failed attempts, state legislators finally succeeded last year in passing a feel-good paid family leave entitlement program. But once the good feelings of passing such a program passed, there was just one problem: how to pay for it.

24 Ways to Improve the State’s Small Business Climate

January 7, 2008 in Publications

24 Ways to Improve the Small Business ClimateWhat is the current condition of the economy for small businesses in Washington state? It depends on whom you ask. By some estimates, Washington ranks among the best in the nation; among others our state is somewhere in the middle but nowhere near the top.

Leaving Well Enough Alone: State Wireless Regulations Could Harm Consumers

December 9, 2007 in Publications

Of all the technological inventions over the last two centuries, none seems to have penetrated American households as profoundly as the wireless telephone. It took more than 90 years for landline service to reach 100 million consumers. It took over 21 years for 100 million consumers to buy a color television. But in less than 17 years wireless phones had reached 100 million consumers.

The Living Wage Movement Comes to Washington State

November 9, 2007 in Publications

The term “living wage” has been in use for many years, often referring to a job that paid a wage capable of supporting a household or family. Politicians use the term to describe “living” or “family-wage” jobs – jobs that pay enough to support a middle-class family.