Articles written by Mark Harmsworth

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  • Rent control won't help tenants

    Mark Harmsworth|Updated Apr 18, 2024

    In a backwards approach to helping tenants, the Federal Government is capping rent increases on subsidized housing at 10% in a bid to reduce the cost of rental properties. The result, should the measures be adopted, will be exactly the opposite and rents will go up. When you place caps on rent, instead of letting the market drive the pricing, the supply of rental property declines and the result is higher demand and higher prices for rent. There is a short-term impact to rental costs, but as many studies show, including a...

  • Unemployed residents may have to repay their unemployment benefits

    Mark Harmsworth, Contributor|Updated Dec 9, 2021

    Due to the federal government changing the unemployment benefit eligibility rules mid-pandemic, some Washington residents, who have been receiving unemployment benefits, will now have repay the benefits despite being approved to receive benefits initially. The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, launched shortly after the pandemic started, did not fully verify that a benefit claimant was eligible for program benefits. Claimants that applied under the rules of the PUA program published in 2020, would have...

  • L&I's virus passport rules overreach

    Mark Harmsworth, Contributor|Updated May 27, 2021

    New COVID workplace restrictions, issued by Washington State Labor and Industries (L&I) late last Friday, May 21st, require employers to check employee vaccine documents before allowing relaxation of social distancing and mask requirements in the workplace. The new state rules require an employer to confirm, and have employees prove their vaccine medical status. The process used to verify vaccination, and the medical status of the employee’s vaccination record, including the employee medical information must be made a...

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