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U.S Postal Service Announces New Prices for 2018

Posted Monday, October 16, 2017 by Jules VanSant.

alt textThe United States Postal Service filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) today of price changes to take effect Jan. 21, 2018. The new prices, if approved, include a one cent increase in the price of a First-Class Mail Forever stamp from 49 cents to 50 cents.

Postcard stamps and metered letters would also have a one cent increase. Today’s filing does not include any price change for single-piece letters being mailed to international destinations or for additional ounces for letters.

The proposed prices would raise Mailing Services product prices approximately 1.9 percent, and most Shipping Services products will average a 3.9 percent price increase. While Mailing Services price increases are limited based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), Shipping Services prices are adjusted strategically, according to market conditions and the need to maintain affordable services for customers. The proposed Mailing Services price changes include:alt text

The new Shipping Services product prices would increase Priority Mail 3.9 percent and Priority Mail Retail an average of 0.8 percent. As in the past, the Postal Service will not include any surcharges for fuel, residential delivery, or regular Saturday delivery.The proposed domestic Priority Mail Flat Rate Retail price changes are:alt text

The PRC will review the prices before they are scheduled to take effect on Jan. 21, 2018. The complete Postal Service price filings with the new prices for all products can be found on the PRC site under the Daily Listings section at For the Mailing Services filing see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. R2018-1. For the Shipping Services filing see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. CP2018-8.

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

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PPI Association Announces the 2017 PrintROCKS! Awards Winners

Posted Thursday, October 12, 2017 by Jules VanSant.

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PPI Association, a visual communications trade organization, hosted its 10th Annual PrintROCKS! Awards & Party on September 22, 2017 at the Hotel Murano in Tacoma, Washington. Print manufacturing companies, agencies, and even students entered the 28 categories ranging from direct mail to catalogs to posters to packaging.

PPI received 210 PrintROCKS! Awards entries from 40 companies in PPI’s six-state region and Utah. This year’s entries raised the bar as new technology and techniques expand traditional capabilities. Excellent examples of web, offset, digital, large format, folds, dies, finishing and special solutions challenged the panel of judges comprised of Karen Wang – PDX Design Scout, Helen Doty – AAA Washington, Carl Vonder Haar – Sales Aficionado and Abe Hayhurst – Konica Minolta Inkjet. Michael Makin, President & CEO of PIA shared the stage with PPI Executive Director Jules Van Sant to honor the top PrintROCKS award winners. The PrintROCKS! Award winners include:

Best of Show: ColorGraphics – Kent, WA

People’s Choice: PrintWest – Woodinville, WA

Best of Division:

101 or more employees: Hudson Printing – Salt Lake City, UT

51-100 employees: Wright Business Graphics – Portland, OR

21-50 employees: PrintWest – Woodinville, WA

20 or less employees: Minuteman Press of Redmond – Redmond, OR

Bindery: North West Book – Bellingham, WA

Student: Highline College – Des Moines, WA

Mad Props: Journal Graphics, North West Book, Premier, and PrintWest

WTFabulous!: Premier

* See all award winners at *

Congratulations to all the winners and participants. The PrintROCKS! Awards Party was a celebration of excellence and achievement. The attendees were thrilled with the entire evening’s event. This year’s theme, Your Name in Lights, celebrated the 10th year of PrintROCKS! complete with a red carpet and Hollywood flair. Party attendees enjoyed Hotel Murano’s fine cuisine, entertainment by caricature artists, and photo booth fun, plus a guest visit from Marilyn Monroe and Sean Connery. Following the awards ceremony, guests enjoyed networking and entertainment.

The Pacific Printing Industries Educational Trust is held in high regard by the PPI membership and was spotlighted at the PrintROCKS! Party. This year, the Ed Trust benefitted from a fundraising auction offering highly valued donations provided by the membership and sponsors. Over the course of the evening, we raised over $23,000 toward developing a future workforce for the print and visual communications industry. The Ed Trust extends a “thank you” to all the donors.

PrintROCKS! Awards & Party details and photos can be found at:> PrintROCKS! > PrintROCKS! 2017> Events > Event Photo Galleries> 2017 PrintROCKS! Party and Awards

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Don’t Let Your Business Go Up In Smoke

Posted Tuesday, October 10, 2017 by Jules VanSant.

alt textSource: Federated Insurance

Fire Prevention Week – October 8-14, 2017

Every year, fires costs business owners billions of dollars—and that number doesn’t even begin to measure the impact fires have on the business itself and the families of employees who are injured or killed by the blaze.

Fire Prevention Week, October 8-14, 2017, is a great reminder that preventing workplace fires is not something to be done yearly, monthly, or even weekly—it should be a daily activity. Investigations reveal that most business fires can be prevented if workers consistently pay attention to a few, very specific hazards. To help you and your employees make it home safely each day, your Federated Insurance team is excited to provide a customizable fire prevention checklist you can use to review your business’s fire prevention techniques. (The latest full version of Adobe Reader is required to open and use the customizable checklist.)

Made available to all association members through our partnership with Federated, the checklist helps you identify and implement high priority fire prevention practices that can significantly impact your business. It’s designed to also allow businesses to add checkpoints for the unique risks and exposures they face. Go to to access the sample checklist and view a video that shows the reality of business fires and discusses the need to make fire safety everyone’s responsibility.

Federated clients can find more fire prevention resources by logging on to Federated’s Shield Network®, or contacting Federated’s Risk Management Resource Center at 1.888.333.4949 or At Federated Insurance, It’s Our Business to Protect Yours®.

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PIA Launches Spoilage Survey

Posted Tuesday, October 10, 2017 by Jules VanSant.

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Printing Industries of America (PIA) announced today that the organization will be investigating spoilage within the printing industry. Data will be collected by means of a survey distributed to printing companies.

The aim of the examination is to better understand the extent that spoilage is tracked, how statistics are calculated, and more importantly, the range and average of spoilage levels by size and type of company. In addition, it seeks to understand whether low spoilage figures correlate to other company behaviors, such as having standardized processes.

“The goal is to let managers benchmark their control of spoilage,” said James Workman, PIA’s vice president of the Center for Technology and Research. “They’ll soon know if their company is a leader or laggard.” PIA also expects the survey results to give insight into best practices for measuring and calculating spoilage.

A summary report of the findings will be sent to all survey respondents and a white paper shared with member companies. A session on the findings will be featured at the 2018 Continuous Improvement Conference (April 8-11 in Chicago). Companies can visit to learn more and participate.

For more information about the survey, please contact Jim Workman at

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Posted Friday, October 6, 2017 by Jules VanSant.

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Source: Barran Liebman

Today, the Oregon Pay Equity Act’s prohibition on screening job applicants or employees based on past compensation takes effect. Under the law, it is illegal to both screen job applicants based on current or past compensation, as well as to determine compensation for a position based on current or past compensation of a prospective employee. The law does not forbid an employer from considering employee compensation during a transfer, move, or hire of the employee to a new position within that same employer.

This new restriction is intended to address the historic pay gap experienced by certain protected classes by prohibiting employers from using that information to perpetually depress wages for those workers. This provision of the law will initially be enforced by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI), although workers will have a private right of action starting January 1, 2024.

If they have not done so already, employers should take steps now to ensure that they will not be in violation of the law. Those steps should include reviewing all job applications and postings to ensure they do not ask for past pay information and counseling all interviewers and recruiters not to ask about pay history when screening new applicants.

While the law prevents employers from seeking pay history from job applicants, it does not prevent them from asking prospective employees their “minimum wage or salary requirement” or their “wage or salary expectations” for the position. Such information is often vital in determining whether the candidate is within the designated pay range of any given position.

The broader pay equity requirements of the new law, which will take effect on January 1, 2019, place a significantly higher burden on employers, and increase exposure. Employers are encouraged to start now on full compliance with the law and to begin working on a general pay equity analysis within the workplace. Furthermore, the new rules will place a higher burden on employers to have records and systems that objectively explain any pay discrepancies between employees who belong to one or more protected classes.

Based on the number of protected classes included in the new law, every employee will belong to multiple protected classes, meaning that all employee pay must be scrutinized. Intentional discrimination is not required under the law and any failure to properly document pay policies could result in a lawsuit. In addition, there is a limited affirmative defense under the law for employers who have conducted a reasonable pay equity analysis within the preceding three years.

Barran Liebman attorneys are available to assist and counsel on how to perform a pay equity analysis and the types of forms and processes that should be reviewed and considered. Please contact us any time for a consultation. For specific questions about how the Pay Equity Act affects your workplace, contact Anthony Kuchulis at (503) 276-2199 or

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