Archive of: Work Force

Title Issue

DNR seeks new settlement terms with Taylor

The new Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark has announced that he will not renew a lease with Taylor Shellfish with terms that were negotiated by the previous commissioner, Doug Sutherland. The terms had been set in a settlement addressing the company's use of aquatic lands in Shelton's Totten Inlet for its geoduck operations.

February 2009

Retail container traffic to fall 11.8 percent

After ending 2008 down 7.9 percent, total cargo volume at the nation's major retail container ports, including operations in Tacoma, is expected to drop at an even faster pace during the first half of 2009 as the economic recession continues, according to the monthly Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and IHS Global Insight.

February 2009

Weyerhaeuser announces Alabama closures

After announcing last month the closure of two Washington state mills, Weyerhaeuser said today that it will indefinitely close its iLevelĀ® veneer and lumber mills in Pine Hill, Ala., effective immediately. The announcement will affect approximately 300 employees at the site.

Demand for wood products continues to decline due to a slowdown in the housing market. As a result of these challenging market conditions, the Pine Hill facilities will close for an indefinite period of time while the company continues to balance supply with demand.

"The demand for residential wood products continues to erode and this announcement is a direct result of the business environment we face," said Tom Gideon, executive vice president, Forest Products.

February 2009

Disaster unemployment benefits now available

People who live or work in King, Lewis, Mason, Pierce and Thurston counties may be eligible for disaster unemployment benefits if they lost their jobs or cannot work because of the storms and flooding that struck the region in January. They have until March 6, to apply for the benefits.

February 2009

Community Health Care 'resizes'

Community Health Care has announced plans to "re-size" its operations to match drops in its projected revenues caused by the down economy.

February 2009

TrueBlue reports quarterly loss

Tacoma-based TrueBlue Inc. reported a net loss of $46 million for the quarter. That loss is a drop from net income of $14.4 million during the fourth quarter of 2007 for the day-labor provider.

"The decline in demand for our services accelerated in the fourth quarter," said CEO Steve Cooper. "We will continue our focus on aggressive cost management and on maintaining our strong financial position. Labor markets have made extreme adjustments during this recession, and we have made corresponding adjustments to our cost structure. We are committed to continuing to connect people to work through our five blue-collar brands and to help our customers manage their labor needs through these turbulent times."

February 2009

Tacoma concrete plant fined for stormwater leaks

Hanson Pipe and Precast's facility in Tacoma was fined by the Washington Department of Ecology $147,000 for reported violations of its sand and gravel permit and failure to treat contaminated stormwater.

Inspectors tallied some 27 violations  between the second quarter of 2007 through the second quarter of 2008 at the South Orchard location. Hanson is one of the largest manufacturers of concrete products in North America.

February 2009

COFFEE BREAK: Stimulus

The Business Examiner would like to know what you think about the various stimulus packages that have already passed or are currently under discussion. Will they work? Are they wastes of taxpayer dollars? Are they too little, too much?

To reply to the poll, send an e-mail to news@BusinessExaminer.com. Poll results will be published in Friday's BE Daily. 

February 2009

Coalition forming to protect infrastructure spending

Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy and Port of Tacoma Executive Director Tim Farrell are assembling a coalition of business and government leaders to preserve regional transportation funding that is under threat as the state and federal budgets work their way through the political roadway.

The coalition will be the topic of a RAMP meeting tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. at the Fabulich Center, at 3600 Port of Tacoma Road. RAMP, the Regional Access and Mobility Project, is a gathering of transportation-minded leaders from the South Sound that seeks improvements to the area's roadway and railways.

February 2009

Retailers want reform to start at health care costs, not mandates

A store owner testifying on behalf of the National Retail Federation told Congress today that efforts to make health care available to everyone should focus on lowering costs rather than mandating that employers provide coverage for their workers.

"We believe we can reach universal coverage - a goal we retailers share - without mandating that employers provide coverage," said Dave Ratner, owner of the four-store Dave's Soda and Pet City in Springfield, Mass. "The problem with employer mandates either to provide coverage or provide specific coverages is that they directly increase the cost of coverage and hence the cost of labor. Higher labor costs mean fewer employees... Who will pay the doctor bills if people don't have jobs?"

February 2009
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