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News Every Day |

3 crazy policies brewing in Seattle

3 crazy policies brewing in Seattle

Four years have passed since the chaotic summer of 2020, when lawless "Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone" (CHAZ) activists took over 14 city blocks in Seattle. That doesn’t mean that crazy ideas have stopped brewing in the Pacific Northwest.  

Although national headlines may no longer be dominated by the CHAZ encampment’s drug use, violence and attacks on police officers, three troubling trends are percolating in Seattle with potentially catastrophic economic ramifications. 

First, ignoring the concerns of the business community, Seattle’s progressive City Council passed an unwise law forcing delivery platforms like DoorDash and Uber Eats to pay delivery drivers over $26 per hour.  

Dubbed the "PayUp" ordinance, that mandate translates to roughly a $60,000 annual salary, far exceeding the starting salaries of critical workers like EMTs, whose average wage in Washington state is around $24 per hour. 

SEATTLE VOTERS HIKE TAXES TO PAY FOR LEFTIST POLICIES, THEN WONDER WHY THINGS GET WORSE

Instead of the economic boost promised by that ordinance’s supporters, the early results have proven devastating.  

Namely, demand for delivery services plummeted after its implementation. As one driver told King-5 Seattle, "I've got nothin… I'm not gonna sit here for hours for one frickin' order." 

Moreover, it’s not just workers who are suffering - it’s also the small businesses in local communities. According to DoorDash, Seattle retailers have lost more than $14 million in revenue on their platform between February and May this year. 

Data from the Washington Alliance for Innovation and Independent Work further showed Seattle businesses that rely on third-party delivery apps have lost more than $28 million in revenue to date - a number that rises every day the PayUp law remains on the books. 

SEATTLE TOPS US CITIES WHERE RESIDENTS ARE CONSIDERING MOVING OVER SAFETY WORRIES, SURVEY FINDS

As those negative consequences took hold, nearly 8 in 10 Seattle voters supported repealing or revising the mandate, with affordability remaining a huge concern amidst record inflation.  

The City Council, however, wasn’t done assessing news taxes and fees. Starting in January, delivery platforms will also be slammed with a new 10-cent per-order fee for online deliveries. 

A second disturbing trend percolating in Seattle is the effort to prevent measures to correct the PayUp ordinance’s consequences. Instead, the city’s activist City Council continues to pull every lever and bend every rule to maintain control and implement its agenda.  

Less than six months after PayUp took effect, wiser members of the Council – led by President Sara Nelson – recognized the damage of the new law and prepared to reduce the minimum wage for delivery drivers to $19.97 – in line with Seattle’s hourly minimum wage. 

WASHINGTON CITY SAYS SEATTLE SHIPPED MIGRANTS TO THEIR CHURCH, OVERWHELMED RESOURCES WHILE REFUSING TO HELP

Unfortunately, the anti-business left mobilized the city's Ethics and Elections Commission to try and bar two of the council members who advocated for that commonsense reform from voting on the legislation – successfully forcing one council member to recuse herself.  

The so-called "violations" of the council members in question? Family connections to the restaurant and hospitality industry created an alleged "conflict of interest." By that logic, any city council member with a business background wouldn’t be able to vote for any broad policies that could help local businesses.  

Cowering to that vocal minority of radical activists, the Seattle City Council has nevertheless now gone on the record as unable to support local businesses.  

AFTER SHOOTING, SEATTLE PARENTS REGRET SCHOOL KICKING OUT OFFICERS IN 2020: 'WHO IS PROTECTING OUR BABIES?'

Third but not least, King County, in whose jurisdiction Seattle falls, raised their minimum wage to a nationwide high of $20.29. Washington already had the highest minimum wage requirement at $16.28, but that was insufficient for the activists who run Seattle’s local government. The compromise bill that would reform the delivery superwage also sets the new wage at a minimum of $19.97 an hour. 

Other states offer similar precautionary lessons.  

Two states to the south, California imposed a $20 minimum wage (up from $16) at fast-food restaurants starting in April, and already the economic catastrophe is piling up. According to analysis from a leading trade group, 10,000 jobs have been eliminated in the first two months alone.  

SEATTLE-AREA OFFICIALS WANT 'NO LOCKS, NO CELLS' FOR JUVENILE OFFENDERS AMID RISE IN TEEN CRIME

To meet those increased costs, restaurants have scaled back hours and reduced operations. Some iconic restaurants have even been forced into bankruptcy. The consequences have been so dire that even extremist California Gov. Gavin Newsom delayed a $25 an hour mandate for health care workers – a mandate that he had previously supported. 

To be sure, we all support the well-being of the workers whom these laws claim to benefit. Costs continue to rise and people are hurting, and no one supports the idea of hard-working people unable to make financial ends meet due to no fault of their own.  

However, punishing companies with arbitrary and unfair taxes or singling out one industry with a super wage only exacerbates the pain for everyone. 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE FOX NEWS OPINION

Just as people grew tired of CHAZ in the summer of 2020, Seattle residents are losing confidence in their elected officials. Last year, for example, the election of a trio of moderates flipped control away from the progressives. 

Let’s hope common sense prevails. In four years, these regressive taxes and fees will be viewed in the same way that lawless encampments on city streets look today – a relic from a bygone era that belongs in the dustbin of history. 

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