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Seattle City Council Approves Tax on High Income Earners

On July 10, 2017, the Seattle City Council approved legislation (Council Bill 119002) to impose a personal income tax at the rate of 2.25 percent on income over $250,000 per year for individuals, or $500,000 per year for married couples filing jointly, applicable to income earned beginning in 2018.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray plans to sign the measure into law on Friday, July 14, 2017.

Read Seattle Council Bill 119002 and the Mayor’s press release

Paid Family and Medical Leave

On July 5, 2017, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed legislation (Substitute S.B. 5978) implementing a statewide paid family and medical leave insurance program to provide qualified Washington employees with paid leave as follows:

  • Family leave for any of the following purposes:
    • To participate in providing care, including physical or psychological care, for a family member of the employee made necessary by a serious health condition of the family member.
    • To bond with the employee’s child during the first twelve months after the child’s birth, or the first twelve months after the placement of a child under the age of eighteen with the employee.
    • Because of any qualifying exigency as permitted under the FMLA for family.
  • Medical leave for an employee’s own serious health condition.

The new law, which was approved in the state Legislature on June 30, 2017, will be in place by 2020. Once in place, the law will repeal and replace the current Washington State Family Leave Act located at Wash. Rev. Code §§ 49.78.010 – 49.78.904.

Read WA Substitute S.B. 5978