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Videos: Ford ad stir immediate firings

March 30, 2013 --

A Ford ad in India for their Figo compact car is reaching new grounds in offensive.  The ad lead to immediate firings of several employees and a public apology.  Watch the Wall Street Video below:

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Telecommunting Ban: At-home workers less productive

March 29, 2013 --

Michael Hendrix
National Chamber Foundation

It was the memo heard ‘round the world—or at least on the blogosphere. Marrissa Mayer’s Yahoo!, in a bid to reboot its bottom line, announced a ban on telecommuting. To be precise, an internal memo was leaked to an online news site. What was meant to be an internal directive quickly became a pundit rallying cry.

The memo kicked up a firestorm by directly targeting telecommuting, a practice that’s been embraced by tech apostles and social activists alike. But as Rebecca Greenfield at The Atlantic Wire said, “Chill out, Marissa Mayer’s work-at-home memo is not about you.” On one level, this decision was simply about Yahoo! and its future. On another level, it was a statement about productivity inside today’s companies. It’s on this last point where the real debate should be had. 

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Good News: Oregon’s sustained recovery

March 28, 2013 --

Patrick Emerson PhD ,
OSU Economist
Oregon Economics Blog


Molly Young has a nice article in The Oregonian about the new Oregon jobs report. She focuses her attention in the unemployment rate that hasn’t budged much (the February rate is 8.4%) and the overall decline in the labor force. Go there for that discussion, she covers it well and it is interesting to think about the supply side of the market, but my attention is on the demand side.

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Bill redefines employer

March 27, 2013 --

nfib-logoBy NFIB

There is hostile, anti-business legislation afoot, reports NFIB State Director Jan Meekcoms from the State Capitol and one measure that would actually help.

Definition of Employer

House Bill 3142 is a repeated attempt to redefine employee, employer and wage. This bill would significantly expand the target of wage claims and other employer liability issues. It also would potentially undermine the Independent Contractor classification. NFIB is opposing HB 3142.

Limited Liability Companies

House Bill 2923 may be one of the most significant pieces of legislation of the 2013 session for NFIB members. For a year, NFIB has consistently informed its members of an Oregon Appellate Court’s decision in February 2012 that created huge liability ramifications for owners and members of limited liability companies (LLCs).

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Oregon shares $7 million Google settlement

March 26, 2013 --

Oregon Shares in $7 Million Google SettlementOregon-tax-news
By Oregon Tax News,

Oregon is party to a multistate settlement with Google, Inc. for the unauthorized collection of information from unsecured wireless networks by its Street View vehicles. The agreement, signed by the attorneys general of 38 states and the District of Columbia, requires Google to educate employees on the privacy and confidentiality of user information, educate the public about securing their wireless networks, and secure and eventually destroy the unauthorized information collected between 2008 and March 2010. Google says executives were unaware of the “payload data” collection. The company has removed data collection software and equipment from its Street View vehicles.

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Oregon: Manufacturing up, labor force down

March 25, 2013 --

chart-duy-mar13University of Oregon Regional Economic Indexes
By Tim Duy
Oregon Economic Forum
University of  Oregon

Oregon economic indicators continued to improve in the first month of 2013.
Highlights of the report include:

• The Oregon Measure of Economic Activity rose to 0.49, compared to a revised -0.23 in in December. The gain was driven in part by a large contribution from the financial services employment component. Often, such unusual gains are revised downward in subsequent reports. The three-month moving average, which smooths month-to-month volatility, improved to -0.14 where “zero” for this measure indicates the average growth rate over the 1990-present period.

• Both the manufacturing and services sectors contributed positively to the report. Both the manufacturing employment and hours worked components made solid contributions. The declining labor force and the still high unemployment rate continue to weigh on the household sector. Overall, the Oregon economy is growing near its average rate since 1990.

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NIKE soars — confounds critics

March 23, 2013 --

NIKE soars — confounds critics

NIKE stocks soared on Friday helped to revive spirits and shock critics who have been piling on the Oregon shoemaker for their lackluster year. Even with new China sales challenges NIKE still produced a greta revenue report. This short story by CNN-Money video explains how NIKE pulled it off.

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Supreme Court rebukes class action abuse case

March 22, 2013 --

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

U.S. Chamber Commends Supreme Court for Limiting Class Action Abuses
Unanimous Ruling Preserves Key Provision of Class Action Fairness Act

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today praised a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that preserves a key provision of the landmark Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA).

In its ruling in the case of Standard Fire Insurance Company vs. Knowles (available here), the Court unanimously rejected a scheme by plaintiffs’ lawyers to circumvent CAFA’s $5 million amount-in-controversy requirement and prevent major class actions from being tried in federal court. The purpose of CAFA was to ensure that major class actions are tried in neutral federal courts rather than certain plaintiff-friendly state courts.

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Nurse pay bill adds to health care costs

March 21, 2013 --

By Associated Oregon Industries,

Nurse practitioners and physician assistants had their first hearing of the session in an ongoing effort to secure fees equal to MDs when performing the same services. Although the bill (HB 2902) was introduced in the last two legislative sessions, proponents were never able to gain enough support for passage.

This session, though, the bill has stronger support from Health Care Committee members in the House and Senate, as well as sponsorship of the Speaker, both committee chairs, and Senator Alan Bates (D-Ashland), an osteopathic physician from Medford.

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Who’s hiring in oregon? — where the jobs are

March 20, 2013 --

Who’s Hiring in Oregon

By Oregon Small Business Association

• plans to hire hundreds of employees when they open their new office in Hillsboro this summer. The leading cloud computing and customer relationship management software company chose the location to recruit from Pacific Northwest talent in such areas as IT support, finance, legal support, customer service and human resources., with approximately 10,000 employees worldwide was named by Forbes Magazine as the World’s Most Innovative Company in both 2011 and 2012 and has been on FORTUNE Magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for five consecutive years. The new office will be in the 100,000-square-foot building formerly occupied by Synopsys.

• Columbia Helicopters, located in Aurora, makes big helicopter purchase to Swedish Military. Columbia has acquired ten Vertol 107-IIs from the Swedish defense ministry. This will increase the company’s fleet of heavy-lift aircraft, which now includes 14 active 107-IIs and six Columbia 234 Chinooks. Columbia Helicopters is the world’s only commercial operator of the 107-IIs. The newly acquired aircraft will be taken down to sheet metal, the seats removed and the helicopters refurbished, an 18-month process. The aircraft are used in logging operations, firefighting, construction projects and petroleum exploration projects. Currently, four 107-IIs are in Afghanistan supporting military operations with heavy-lift capabilities.

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