Boeing deal approved
Updated at 10:30 p.m. Boeing workers have narrowly approved contract concessions that the company promises will give the Puget Sound area assembly of the planned 777X airliner. The contract carried by 51-to-49 percent among members of the Machinists union District 751 chapter. Gov. Jay Inslee praised the decision as allowing "the state to move forward" with construction of an airliner with advanced technology. He said assurances from Boeing mean "there won't be anymore South Carolinas," referring to the company's decision to build the 787 Dreamliner in both Washington and South Carolina. Crosscut's John Stang will have a report shortly. — J.C.
After weeks of mystery about what's blocking progress on the waterfront tunnel, the state Department of Transportation now says it's could be an 8-inch steel pipe. And that the pipe, which was identified during an inspection Thursday, was actually installed by the state itself in 2002 as part of an effort to track water flow near the Alaskan Way Viaduct, according to a department statement. Unfortunately, it was somehow left in place. The department says there may be other obstructions ahead. In the meantime, Transportation calls this discovery "progress". Crosscut's Bill Lucia's report is here. — J.C.
Minimum wage executive order
Mayor Ed Murray today ordered city departments to raise employee pay for all employees to $15 per hour. As Crosscut reported exclusively on Tuesday, a city analysis shows that 617 positions, many of them part-time, currently pay less than that; an adjustment that will take $700,000 to make. Here's Crosscut's full report on the mayor's action. — J.C.
Goodbye, traffic cams (in Monroe)
After two years, the city of Monroe has quietly deactivated its traffic cameras for ticketing motorists. The Herald says city officials, who won a court battle on their right to use the cameras, had refused to say what would happen when the contract expired on Dec. 31. The cameras, in use at a single intersection, had targeted both red-light violators and speeders. Initiative entrepreneur Tim Eyman helped local opponents get repeated advisory ballots, which went against the use of the devices. He emails us: "In every city that we forced a vote, the people rejected the ticketing cameras and the city took 'em down: Mukilteo (71 percent against), Longview (59 percent against), Bellingham (68 percent against), Redmond (6,000 signatures against), and now Monroe (68 percent against). Citizens hate ticketing cameras — they just do." Are residents restless in Seattle too? — J.C.
Hawks aren't America's team
A new study by Emory University sports marketing professors says no NFL team has a greater divergence between the intense love it receives at home and the hatred directed at it from the rest of the country than the Seattle Seahawks, seattlepi.com reports. The professors, who analyzed years of Twitter traffic, note that part of the hostility comes from "outspoken personalities like Richard Sherman," a star defensive back whose Stanford education is put to good use in smart but mouthy quips. They also cite winning as a factor in driving out-of-market envy: Guess there will be lots of nastiness after our team wins the Super Bowl. — J.C.
Is it really coworking if all the offices are private?
High-end coworking chain WeWork is opening its first Seattle location in South Lake Union in early February. The space will be three floors, though it's mostly composed of small, private 1-18 person offices on month-to-month leases with just a few desks for real community coworking. That's a bit of a departure from spots like Impact Hub and Office Nomads, which focus more on roll-up-your sleeves elbow rubbing and collaboration.
Not that elbow rubbing will be in short supply: Longtime Greendrinks organizer and event whiz Gina Philips will be managing the space, which will mean plenty of well-engineered opportunities to mingle. Costs will range from $300 a month for a single spot at a public desk to $12,500 for an 18-person office with a private terrace. Rental includes perks: WiFi, a shared receptionist, conference rooms, lounges, kitchens and a game room. Not to mention free beer, which, as Google can attest, is a powerful recruitment tool. — B.A.
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