skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

America's 'Radical Elders' continue their work for fairness, justice; SCOTUS upholds law disarming domestic abusers; Workplace adoption benefits help families, communities; Report examines barriers to successful post-prison re-entry in NC.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

A congresswoman celebrates Biden protections for mixed status families, Louisiana's Ten Commandments law faces an inevitable legal challenge, and a senator moves to repeal the strict 19th century anti-obscenity and anti-abortion Comstock Act.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Rural educators say they need support to teach kids social issues, rural businesses can suffer when dollar stores come to town, prairie states like South Dakota are getting help to protect grasslands and a Minnesota town claims the oldest rural Pride Festival.

Unions Warn of Potential Effect on Jobs from WA Timber, Schools Proposal

play audio
Play

Friday, July 22, 2022   

Washington state's top education official is proposing a change to how timber revenue is used for schools. Unions are urging caution so the policy doesn't result in unintended consequences for workers.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal has proposed no longer using money from timber sales on state-owned lands for urban-area school construction.

Policymakers shouldn't yet assume today is anything like the "timber wars" of the 1990s, which pitted urban versus rural areas, said Sara Palmer, vice chair of the natural resources policy committee for the Washington Federation of State Employees, which represents staff in the Department of Natural Resources.

"Today it's a little more complicated, there's a little more nuance to it," she said, "and our members really feel that what we are doing at this time is sound, scientifically based land management. And we want that to continue to be a priority in the state of Washington for state trust lands."

Reykdal has proposed that the money from timber sales go to rural schools, as it has in the past, as well as sustaining healthy forests. He said it's harder and more expensive for rural communities to pass bonds for school construction than it is for urban communities.

Palmer said prioritizing funding for rural schools is a positive development, but her union is waiting to hear more details on the proposal. She said there are concerns about how it could affect workers in her union, as well as a sister union - the Washington Public Employees Association - and mill and forest workers.

"We really feel it is possible to balance economic needs and environmental needs and to find a middle path," she said. "We're really proud of the work that we do on that, and we're really proud of the work the department has done on that over the years."

Reykdal is rolling out this and other policy recommendations so legislators can consider them next session.

Disclosure: Washington Federation of State Employees - AFSCME Council 28 contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Health Issues, Livable Wages/Working Families. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
The 2024 Summer U.S. Conference of Mayors in Kansas City, Mo., will be under the leadership of its president, Mayor Hillary Schieve of Reno, Nev., and host Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas.
(SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe Stock)

play sound

Some Michigan mayors are out of the office this week - but still working for their cities. They're at the 92nd meeting of the United States …


Social Issues

play sound

Summer is here, but some Wisconsin households juggling higher consumer costs and other basic needs might feel like a vacation is out of reach…

Social Issues

play sound

An interim North Dakota legislative committee this week got an update from state leaders on potential moves to reconnect kids in foster care with thei…


Social Issues

play sound

More employers are offering benefits to adoptive parents, according to a new survey by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The amount of paid …

About a quarter of Americans hold unfavorable views of both former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden. (Christian Delbert/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

The Arizona Court of Appeals recently dismissed a case brought by Republican Arizona attorney general candidate Abraham Hamadeh, Republican Cochise …

Social Issues

play sound

North Carolina's business community is alarmed after Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson praised the controversial House Bill 2, known as the "Bathroom Bill," at …

Social Issues

play sound

Members of the group Radical Elders are participating in a Chicago tech conference this weekend to explain the impact of technology on older Americans…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021