Wednesday, 11 January 2017 19:57
The Edmonds Chamber of Commerce was able to give back to the Edmonds community in a big way last year. In 2016 the Edmonds Chamber was proud to donate $24,572.97 to local service clubs and non-profit organizations.
“Our business and individual members enable the Edmonds Chamber to do so much in our community” said Greg Urban, President and CEO of the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce. “We work very hard for this community, in creating networking opportunities for business owners and in producing community celebrations for everyone, like the 4th of July.”
The Edmonds Chamber turns 110 years old and we need the continued support of our community. How can you help? If you have a business, join as a business member. If you don’t have a business, become an individual member for $125 per year to support our programs and community events.
In addition, members of the community are able to make tax-deductible contributions to the Edmonds Chamber Foundation, a 501(c)3 charitable organization. The Edmonds Chamber Foundation is a big supporter of the annual 4th of July celebrations, a much-loved tradition now in its 110th year.
For more information about the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce, how you can join as a business or individual member or donate to the Edmonds Chamber Foundation, please contact the Chamber office at 425-670-1496 or www.edmondswa.com.
About the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce
Our mission is to promote the economic vitality of Edmonds through advocacy, leadership, education and community-building events. The Edmonds Chamber of Commerce was chartered in 1907 and is a voluntary organization serving over 360+ business and professional leaders in several neighborhoods including the Downtown, Waterfront, Perrinville, Firdale, Westgate and Highway 99 districts. The organization also serves to encourage unified public support and initiate action for the sustainability of a rich quality of life in the community, country and state. To learn more about the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce, as well as its events and programs, visit www.edmondswa.com.
Tuesday, 10 January 2017 23:11
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the newest version of the Form I-9 is now available. Click here to view and download the form.
Employers can use the previous version of Form I-9, with a revision date of March 8, 2013, until January 21, 2017. After January 21, 2017, all previous versions will be invalid.
Employers who don’t complete the Form I-9 for each employee hired to work in the United States may receive monetary penalties up to $2,156 per Form I-9 and in some cases may be charged with criminal penalties.
The new presidential administration claims it will focus on immigration policies, particularly with respect to unauthorized workers; as a result, 2017 is expected to be a record-breaking year in immigration enforcement. We encourage employers to be vigilant in their Form I-9 compliance in efforts to mitigate the risk of fines, penalties, and possibly even jail time.
Here are some common questions about the Form I-9:
- How do I fill out the new an I-9?
- Is E-Verify required in my state; if so, how do I use it?
- What are the most common and costly errors when completing Forms I-9, how do I correct them?
- How far are you required to go to determine if a document is "genuine"?
- What are the retention requirements for an I-9, and what’s the best way to store them?
- How can a self-audit help reduce my risk?
- What are acceptable documents to prove identity and work authorization?
- What are the pros & cons of copying supporting documents that employees provide to complete the I-9?
- How do I re-verify an I-9 when the documents the employee previously presented have expired?
- How do I audit terminated employees’ I-9?
- What’s the correct way to discard an I-9?
- What are the benefits of completing an I-9 electronically?
- Is there anything I should consider when deciding to go paperless?
- Is there anything else I should be doing in regard to an I-9?
Please your Human Resources, Payroll or legal provider with employment law questions or any of these Form I-9 questions.
We hope this information is helpful to you and your company.
UPDATE ON OVERTIME RULES
Yesterday, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Texas issued a
nationwide preliminary injunction against the Department of Labor's ("the
DOL") new rule increasing the salary-level test for exempt employees from
$23,660 per year to $47,476 per year. The injunction blocks the new rule
from going into effect on December 1, 2016.
Can employers in Washington rely on the Texas court ruling?
On its face, the ruling says it is nationwide. However, the federal courts
in Washington may decide not to follow the Texas court's ruling because
Washington was not a party to the decision. It is unlikely that the courts
here in Washington will rule on this issue prior to the December 1, 2016
effective date of the new rule, which leaves Washington employers in a state
of uncertainty unless the DOL issues a statement indicating whether or not
it intends to enforce the rule in states that were not a party to the Texas
What are the possible consequences if a Washington employer does not raise
exempt employee's salaries on December 1?
If the Washington courts decide that the Texas decision does not apply to
them, then any Washington employers who failed to raise the salary of their
exempt employees to $47,476 per year on December 1, 2016 would be liable for
wrongful withholding of wages and would owe back wages to the affected
employees, plus interest at 12% and any attorney's fees they may have
incurred to collect the money. The employees or the DOL could also make a
claim for double damages, but employers may be able to avoid double damages
by arguing that they, in good-faith, relied upon the Texas injunction.
What are the possible consequences if a Washington employer does raise
exempt employee's salaries on December 1?
The Texas injunction does not prohibit employers from raising salaries on
December 1. The only consequence is that if the new salary rule is thrown
out, the employer will have paid the employee more than the law required.
What do you recommend?
At this point, we recommend waiting until we are closer to December 1 to
finalize any decisions about employee raises to meet the salary test to see
if the DOL will issue any guidance as to whether it intends to enforce the
rule in states that were not a party to the Texas lawsuit. If no guidance
is issued by the DOL, we suggest weighing the cost of the salary increases
and effect on morale of not giving an employee an increase against the risk
that employers will be ordered to pay more than back wages to employees if
the DOL rule is found to be applicable to Washington employers.
What if I have employees in others states?
Contact us to see if the states where your employees are located were named
as parties in the Texas lawsuit.
What if I have other questions?
Please call or email your Employment and Labor Law attorney.
Ogden Murphy Wallace's Employment and Labor Law Practice Group
Gil Sparks | Attorney
One Fifth Street, Suite 200 Wenatchee, WA 98801
phone: 509.662.1954 | fax: 509.663.1553
For more information on the Overtime Final Rule, see www.dol.gov/overtime
A better way to communicate with Employment Security about unemployment
By Kristin Alexander, Communications Manager
Employment Security Department
The Employment Security Department is making it easier for employers to communicate with the agency about former workers who have applied for unemployment benefits.
We know that human resources professionals and small business owners need a way to quickly and easily respond to requests for information. That’s why Employment Security plans to launch a new website called eServices in January that will allow employers to reply online to inquiries about employees who were discharged or quit. Until now, employers have been able to respond only by phone or mail.
Employers will also be able to sign up for the Shared Work Program or manage their employees who are currently enrolled in the program, which provides an alternative to laying off workers.
You’ll be able to log on to eServices from esd.wa.gov. When you do, you’ll be asked to use your SecureAccess Washington (SAW) account. Use the same SAW account that you use to access EAMS, Employment Security’s service for submitting wage reports, paying taxes and checking your tax rate.
Our new website is one way we are improving customer service to make your job easier.
Tuesday, 15 November 2016 21:13
The recent elections have brought about many changes in our state and nation, one of those changes is the passage of I-1433 in Washington State.
How will the new Washington State minimum wage and paid sick leave affect you as a business or employee?
- The state minimum wage will increase to $13.50 per hour.
- The increase will be phased in over the next few years.
- $11.00 per hour in 2017
- $11.50 per hour in 2018
- $12.00 per hour in 2019
- $13.50 per hour in 2020
- Starting in 2021 it will increase each year at the rate of inflation (est. 2.7% per year)
Paid Sick Leave
- Employers required to provide paid sick leave to all employees starting January 2018.
- Paid sick leave will be based on an accrual rate
- 1 hour is accrued for every 40 hours worked (1 to 40 ratio)
- A full time employee will accrue 52 hours (6.5 days) per year
- Employers are responsible to track all accrual balances
Friday, 04 November 2016 20:14
Halloween Costume Contest Winners
The Edmonds Chamber of Commerce would like to thank everyone for making this Halloween Trick-or-Treat Night one of the best yet!! An estimated 6,000+ people crowded the downtown Edmonds streets to collect candy from local merchants.
Thank you to our sponsors: Windermere Edmonds, Dewer Meeks + Ekrem, Edmonds Chamber Foundation.
Special Thanks to the business owners who passed out candy all night.
Here are the winners of the annual Costume Contest:
Best Pet: Yukio (owner)
Best 0-6 yrs old: Mazie
Best 7-12 yrs old: Katie
Best 13-17 yrs old: Taylor
Best Adult: Felisa
Best Family/Group: Sindora Family & Marley Family
Congratulations to all those who participated and to the winners.
Start planning your costume for next year!!!
Tuesday, 18 October 2016 18:39
2017 Board Nominations Open for Edmonds Chamber of Commerce
EDMONDS, WA, October 18, 2016:
Since 1907, the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce has been a fixture in the Edmonds community joining business owners so their collective voice can be heard. The Chamber helps to facilitate connections and collaborations within our business community, non-profits, service clubs and with government entities. In addition, we have established a number of community-building events to promote tourism and bring our citizenry together in celebration.
Our membership stands at over 390 businesses and we are proud to work with so many of our community partners on a wide range of projects and initiatives. Only 3 people staff the Chamber office, which means that we rely heavily on volunteers in order to accomplish so many things. Our Board members are among those fantastic volunteers, serving on committees and dedicating their time for our events. We rely greatly upon the collective knowledge and influence of our Board members, in order to identify opportunities and serve as a bridge between the Chamber and larger businesses community.
The Board of Directors meets from 7:30 to 9:00 am the third Thursday every month. As a policy board, we look to our Board members to guide the Chamber into the future, set long-term strategic goals and help identify issues our membership should support or oppose. The Edmonds Chamber is a non-political organization, meaning we do not endorse specific political candidates. The Chamber does however use our collective voice to speak for or against issues that will adversely affect our community and a favorable business climate.
Board members serve 3-year terms, with a maximum service of 3 terms. Our bylaws allow as many as 30 Board members but we typically keep the number under 25 at any given point. It is our desire to strengthen the representation on the Board to include a diverse cross section of the business community.
We are now accepting nominations for 2017 Board member service. The nomination process is a simple online form available on the Edmonds Chamber website at www.edmondswa.com or Click Here. Self-nominations are open until Friday, November 11th. The only requirements for Board service are that you or your business is an active member of the Chamber and your account is in good standing.
Should you have any questions about the Edmonds Chamber, membership or the application process please call the Chamber office at 425-670-1496 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Board Member & Nominating Committee Chair
About the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce
Our mission is to promote the economic vitality of Edmonds through advocacy, leadership, education and community-building events. The Edmonds Chamber of Commerce was chartered in 1907 and is a voluntary organization serving over 390+ business and professional leaders in several neighborhoods including the Downtown, Waterfront, Perrinville, Firdale, Westgate and Highway 99 districts. The organization also serves to encourage unified public support and initiate action for the sustainability of a rich quality of life in the community, country and state. To learn more about the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce, as well as its events and programs, visit www.edmondswa.com.
Tuesday, 06 September 2016 21:41
As you know, the City Council recently adopted amendments to the City’s sign code. The most significant changes related to “pedestrian signs” (A-frames and such) in the downtown/waterfront area. Since then a question has come up regarding the new requirement for the square footage of pedestrian signs to be counted in the businesses’ total square footage for permitted signage.
The particular question is:
For downtown/waterfront businesses that obtained a permit for their wall signs in conformance with the existing sign code AND have a pedestrian sign that now meets the current code, does the pedestrian sign have to be counted in the total square footage allowed for wall signs? In other words, can up to an additional 6 square feet for the pedestrian sign be “grandfathered” in to the total size allowed?
The answer is “yes” under certain conditions, per the attached interpretation.
Shane Hope, AICP
Development Services Director
City of Edmonds
Wednesday, 31 August 2016 18:16
Membership Manager for the Edmonds Chamber Named
EDMONDS, WA, August 31, 2016: The Edmonds Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that a new Membership Manager has been selected. After an extensive interview process we have made our selection. I am pleased to announce Jan Nicholas as our new Membership Manager.
Jan comes to us with a diverse background of skill and experience in Event Management, Sales, Leadership, Client Management and Fundraising. She has a unique combination of strong interpersonal communication skills and organizational ability we are sure will be an asset to the Chamber team and prove to be a great benefit to our members and constituents.
Jan is originally from Corvallis, Oregon and graduated from Oregon State University. She played college basketball at OSU and as a professional in Europe for two (2) years. Following her eight (8) years of playing basketball, Jan was Division 1 collegiate basketball coach with stops at SW Louisiana, San Diego State, Colorado State and Cal State Northridge.
Jan is married with two children and moved to the area in 1992, she has called the Puget Sound home ever since.
Through the years, she has been involved with many organizations and projects from General Manager at High Five Sportswear, VP of Operations for the Emerald City Basketball Club, the Fundraising Chair for Little League International, the Northshore School District Auction Chair and a Catering Director for Rainin Ribs BBQ.
We look forward to Jan Nicholas beginning with the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce this September. Her work experiences, warm demeanor and ability to build winning teams will surely make her to an asset to the greater Edmonds community and our Chamber membership.
Thank you all for your support, we are looking forward to a wonderful end of 2016 and an even better 2017.
Greg Urban - President & CEO