This week, Seattle City Council authorized an action to close the Gender Equity Gap at the City of Seattle. A recent study found that, on average, women in Puget Sound make $0.73 for every dollar earned by a man. Among city employees, the gap is smaller, at $0.90 per dollar, but that’s still a gap. And women only make up one-third of the city’s workforce. Former Mayor Mike McGinn and Councilmemember Jean Godden started an effort in 2013 to identify solutions to end the disparity, which resulted in the following action plan: Create a regional Gender Equity Initiative to encourage other employers in the region to address gender inequities; develop a paid parental leave policy for the city to ensure that parents can take time off to bond with new additions to the family; undertake a comprehensive review of existing city policy to determine which practices either cause or address disparity, then developing consistent policies and strategies across all departments; create a centralized citywide leadership and management development program to train under-represented employee groups to take positions of leadership; and develop best practices and training so city managers remain aware of gender disparities and take proper steps to address problems
On June 1, the Pride flag is being raised over Seattle City Hall at 11 a.m. Mayor Murray and Colonel Grethe Cammermeyerwill speak at the event.
The rumor that Seattle is now more “gay-friendly” was confirmed in a recent study by NerdWallet. Factors considered in the study were the Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index Score, the percentage of households with same-sex partners, and the number of sexual orientation-related hate crimes per 100,000 residents. Just in time for the upcoming LGBTQ Pride Month.
The 2014 property valuations were mailed to all residential property owners in Area 13, i.e. Capitol Hill, last week by the office of King County Assessor Lloyd Hara. In the last year, Area 13’s property values increased by 4.9 percent.
Hara’s office annually revalues all properties, and conducts physical inspections on all properties every six years. Capitol Hill’s last physical inspection was in 2011.
“In 2013, we saw a residential increase in 76 out of 86 residential areas in King County and we expect to see continued growth in residential values for 2014,” Hara said.
The remaining 600,000 residential and commercial valuation notices to taxpayers will be sent throughout the rest of King County from now through October.
During its May 19 meeting, King County Council adopted a motion to adopt a living wage policy that covers all county employees, plus non-profits, businesses, and entities that receive tax exemptions, credits, or other financial benefits within King County.
Council Chair Larry Phillips, a co-sponsor of the motion, said, “This proposal is putting that commitment into action by asking those who contract with the county to pay their employees a wage that will allow them to live and thrive in this County.”
What that translates to right now is county executives will conduct research, like what jobs currently make less than $15 per hour, that will be used to develop an ordinance that will establish the living wage policy.