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Politics Northwest

The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

November 7, 2013 at 4:54 PM

SeaTac minimum-wage measure holds lead, but gap narrows

The outcome of a ballot measure to create a $15-an-hour minimum wage for airport-related workers in SeaTac remains in limbo.

SeaTac Proposition 1, which would raise the wage floor to $15 and guarantee paid sick leave for roughly 6,300 hospitality and transportation workers, held its lead in vote returns Thursday, but the gap narrowed.

With 4,325 votes counted, Proposition 1 led 52 percent to 48 percent. That represents a difference of only 179 votes out of 12,100 registered voters in SeaTac.

Wednesday, Proposition 1 led 53 percent to 47 percent, or by 236 votes.

Supporters of the measure said in a statement that they’re still winning, and they expect ballot counts to be between 6,000 and
6,500.

Proposition 1 would take effect Jan. 1, covering workers at about 70 airport-related businesses in SeaTac, including airline contractors, hotels and car-rental companies.

Opponents of the measure said the race still is too close to call.

“There’s reason to believe that the ‘no’ votes were later in coming in,” said Gary Smith, spokesman for Common Sense SeaTac, a business-backed political committee opposed to Proposition 1. “We’re content to wait and see what happens.”

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