News

Court: State can nix public pension increases

Court: State can nix public pension increases

Photo: clipart.com/Washington State Supreme Court

AP News

SEATTLE, Wash. –┬áThe Washington state Supreme Court says the Legislature has the right to repeal pension increases paid to state employees that were approved during the stock market boom of the late 1990’s.

In a separate ruling Thursday, the justices also said lawmakers had the authority to end uniform cost of living adjustments for certain state retirees.

Both decisions reversed lower court rulings.

Public sector unions had argued the state violated contractual obligations by revoking the pension hikes and cancelling the uniform cost of living payments.

The justices disagreed, saying that in both cases the Legislature reserved the right to repeal the benefits.

Opponents of the increased pension benefits had said if the Supreme Court upheld them it would have cost state billions of dollars in additional spending in future budget cycles.

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

Today in entertainment: March 4

Fresh
john-lennon

A look at the Hollywood headlines of years past.

in Local

Environmental groups sue over plan to kill wolves

generic wolves

Five environmental groups have filed a lawsuit against the federal government challenging its authority to kill endangered wolves in Washington state.

in Local

Washington House readies its version of pot market overhaul

In this graphic provided by the Washington State Liquor Control Board, a logo that will be used for labeling legal marijuana produced in Washington state is shown. Officials released a preliminary draft of regulations for growing and selling legalized marijuana Thursday, May 16, 2013. Voters last November made Washington and Colorado the first states to legalize the sale of taxed marijuana to adults over 21 at state-licensed stores.

With the state Senate passing a bill to regulate medical marijuana, Washington's House of Representatives is preparing its version of a pot-market overhaul.

in Local

Washington House votes to raise hourly minimum wage to $12

pay day

The Washington state House has voted to raise the state's minimum wage to $12 an hour.

in Local

Washington House passes bill to require paid sick leave

sick girl

The Washington state House has passed a bill requiring many of the state's employers to offer employees paid sick leave.