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Mining Asteroids
11:30 am
Fri July 26, 2013

What Happens In Outer Space, Might Not Stay In Outer Space

Chris Lewicki, president and chief engineer of Planetary Resources.
Courtesy of Chris Lewicki

Last week the President’s plan to fund a mission to land on an asteroid was thwarted when the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology authorized a bill that will specifically prohibit the space agency from moving forward with the plan.

As arguments stall, funding for our government’s space programs in the private sector moves forward. Bellevue, Wash. is the home to one company that plans to not just land on an asteroid but to mine it for resources. Planetary Resources' president and chief engineer is Chris Lewicki. Ross Reynolds sits down with Lewicki to discuss his plans.

Raising The Minimum Wage
9:28 am
Fri July 26, 2013

SeaTac City Council Signs Off On “Good Jobs Initiative"

A food court at Sea-Tac airport. The initiative would cover about 6,500 workers, including those who work at airport restaurants.
Flickr Photo/Matt Biddolph

People in the City of SeaTac could vote this November on an initiative that would create a $15 an hour hour minimum wage for thousands of workers at Sea-Tac airport and other places. The so-called “Good Jobs Initiative” would apply to about 6,500 workers in transportation and hospitality jobs in the City of SeaTac. Tuesday night, the SeaTac City Council decided to allow the measure to go before voters.

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Wage Disparity
2:09 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

200 Berry Pickers Resume Strike In Skagit Valley

Workers have once again walked off the job at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Burlington protesting wages.
From Sakuma Market Stands' Facebook page.

For the second time in 10 days, workers at Sakuma Brothers Farms have gone on strike. More than 200 berry pickers have walked off the job at the farm near Burlington, saying they want the farm to pay more for each box of blueberries and strawberries they harvest.

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Hedreen Development
11:21 am
Fri July 19, 2013

Union Tries To Block Downtown Hotel Deal

Hotel development on the site of Seattle's Greyhound station is getting pushback from a union.
Flickr Photo/Matthew Rutledge

There are plans in the works to build a huge convention hotel on the site of Seattle’s Greyhound bus station. But the developer behind the hotel is threatening to cancel the project unless a union trying to block the project at city hall relents.

The union says the hotel would bring too many low-wage jobs to downtown Seattle. Ross Reynolds talks to Mark Stiles, a reporter at the Puget Sound Business Journal, who has been covering the story.

Environment And Business
8:00 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Environmental Debt With Amy Larkin

How can business and the natural world successfully coexist?
Flickr Photo/rlpporch

Environmental debt — global warming, extreme weather, pollution — is weakening the global economy. Amy Larkin, formerly of Greenpeace, discusses how the natural world and business can coexist. She spoke at the Elliott Bay Book Company on July 1.

Listener Call-In
11:39 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Is The Minimum Wage Too Low?

Correction 7/24/13:  In the original broadcast of this interview we misstated that Seattle City Council candidate Kshama Sawant advocates a minimum wage of $21.72 an hour. According to her campaign representative Devin Matthews, Sawant is calling for a $15.00 dollar minimum wage. 

A recent economic survey showed it costs over $52,000  for a one parent and one child family to live a modest lifestyle in Seattle. Would raising the minimum wage to $15.00 an hour bring more people closer to earning a living wage? Or would a $15.00 minimum wage just discourage employers from hiring? Ross Reynolds talks to Felix Salmon, financial reporter for Reuters, about the case for each side, and callers share their opinions on if we should raise the minimum wage.

GMO Bounce-Back
10:08 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Northwest Wheat Farmers Look Forward To Restored Market

Originally published on Mon July 15, 2013 12:57 pm

  The first bushels of Northwest wheat are coming off honey-colored fields in southeast Washington.

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Dreamliner Fires
11:11 am
Fri July 12, 2013

More Problems On 787s Mean Turbulence For Boeing Stock

Originally published on Fri July 12, 2013 11:40 am

A Boeing 787 caught fire on the tarmac at London's Heathrow Airport on Friday, followed hours later by a technical problem aboard another 'Dreamliner' that forced the plane to turn back from a trans-Atlantic flight. The incidents sent Boeing's stock down more than 7 percent at one point.

The first incident involved an Ethiopian Airlines plane with no passengers aboard. The second occurred aboard a Thomson Airways flight en route from Manchester, England to Sanford, Fla.

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Household Incomes
8:41 am
Thu July 11, 2013

Study: A Family In Seattle Needs $70,000 Per Year To Live Modestly

Groceries, health care, child care and car maintenance add up quickly in Seattle.
Carlos Ferreira and Jennifer Watts

Recently, the Economic Policy Institute released a study that said that a family of four – two parents and two children – need a household income of $70,000 a year to maintain a “modest lifestyle.”

John Burbank, the executive director of the Economic Opportunity Institute which is a regional partner of the EPI, explained that how the calculations were made.

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Employers Eager To Hire
4:24 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

Thousands Show Up At Kent Jobs Fair

Christopher Price (left) and Wilette McClenon-Chanteuse waited in live for several hours to meet with Boeing representatives.
Jim Gates

Despite the drop in Washington’s unemployment rate, many people are still looking for work. More than 3,000 people attended a jobs fair at the ShoWare Center in Kent on Tuesday. Companies had a big presence too. Law enforcement recruiters showed up in force, as did insurance companies and healthcare providers. But the big player was Boeing.  

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Unlimited Vacation
11:48 am
Wed July 10, 2013

More Vacation, More Problems?

Flickr Photo/davitydave

The Society for Human Resource Management’s 2012 Survey says that one percent of US employers offer unlimited vacation if you get your work done, including big companies like IBM and Netflix, and smaller start-ups like Seattle’s Social Strata, a tech company focused on social media applications.

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Canada, Culture, Commerce
10:00 am
Wed July 10, 2013

The News From Canada, Top Ten Movies From 1963, And Business News

Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" turns 50 this year, but will it make it to Robert Horton's top 10 list for movies from 1963?
Original movie poster for "The Birds."

Vancouver Sun political correspondent Vaughn Palmer tells us who is on the B-list to be the next US ambassador to Canada (hint: it is not our former governor Christine Gregoire).  Film critic Robert Horton picks the top 10 movies from 1963 in honor of their 50th anniversary.  Then, Michele Matassa-Flores of the Puget Sound Business Journal brings us the region’s latest economic news.  

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Health Exchanges
9:25 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Northwest Health Exchanges Are Big Money Ventures

Cover Oregon

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 4:47 pm

Nearly $500 million.

That’s how much the federal government has awarded Washington, Oregon and Idaho to create health benefit exchanges. These are the new web portals to purchase insurance under the Affordable Care Act. It’s a costly undertaking that involves six-figure salaries, hefty IT contracts and high-end advertising campaigns.

If a green, talking gecko can sell car insurance, then maybe Portland-based folk singer Laura Gibson can sell health insurance.

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ContextChina
11:48 am
Tue July 9, 2013

Covering The Connection Between China And Seattle

Chinatown International District, Seattle.
Flickr Photo/Curtis Cronn

  Tomorrow kicks off the fifth round of the US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington, D.C. Here in the other Washington, economic ties to China are strong. Washington state is home to some of the largest international companies – Microsoft, Starbucks, Boeing and Amazon to name a few. And a recent Chinese movie hit, “Finding Mr. Right (Beijing Meets Seattle)” has put the relationship between the two on the map. Ross Reynolds talks with Kristi Heim, founder of ContextChina, an online newspaper that covers the connection between Seattle and China.

Online Sellers
11:45 am
Tue July 9, 2013

Amazon And The Business of Selling Books

Flickr Photo/Zhao !

  Seattle’s own Amazon is the largest bookseller in the United States. Amazon enjoys a market share of 25 percent in print books and 60 percent in e-books. Recently, some of their prices have gone up. Ross Reynolds talks with a researcher at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance about how she thinks Amazon’s market share changes the business of selling books.

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