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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


New labor agreement builds on partnerships to deliver efficiencies and sensible total compensation package

Summary

King County has negotiated a two-year labor agreement with a coalition representing nearly half of King County’s 14,000 employees that delivers new efficiencies and sets total compensation for 2019-2020.

Story

King County Executive Dow Constantine and 29 labor leaders representing 25 unions signed a new two-year compensation package yesterday for county employees that leverages strong relationships with labor and a new streamlined negotiation process to deliver better outcomes for employees and residents.

For only the second time ever, the county negotiated total compensation – such as health benefits, general wage increases, leaves, and retirement-related benefits - with a coalition representing nearly half of King County’s 14,000 employees rather than individually negotiating with each collective bargaining unit, building on a process first used for the 2017-2018 biennium.

“This agreement makes sense for our employees, our government, and our region,” Executive Constantine said. “It builds on our ground breaking Master Labor Agreement with the King County Coalition of Unions and will help us continue to tackle the most pressing challenges facing us today.”

Last May, King County adopted the first ever Master Labor Agreement with the King County Coalition of Unions, which governs work conditions for 62 bargaining units representing about 5,500 King County employees.

The agreement signed yesterday was negotiated with the Coalition of Unions in a framework that determines several aspects of compensation, including health care, paid leave, and wages, a process that is more efficient and effective for all parties. The wage adjustments are also more predictable and sustainable since they are awarded in flat percentages rather than tied to indexes that fluctuate.

“The significance of this Total Compensation Agreement between the Coalition of Unions and King County should not be overlooked,” Michael Gonzales, Senior Business Agent with Teamsters Local 174 and MLA and Total Compensation Bargaining Co-Chair for the King County Coalition of Unions, said. “This contract, along with Master Labor Agreement, not only brings equity to our membership but also proves Executive Dow Constantine is correct that by working with labor you can treat your employees with dignity and at the same time make government efficient for all the residents of King County.”

The package includes a general wage increase of 4 percent in 2019, 1.5 percent for January to June 2020, and an additional 1.5 percent for July to December 2020, reinstatement of the early retiree health care subsidy, automatic enrollment for deferred compensation, and a new study on the viability of a child care voucher.

Total_Compensation_agreement

Quotes

This agreement makes sense for our employees, our government, and our region. It builds on our ground breaking Master Labor Agreement with the King County Coalition of Unions and will help us continue to tackle the most pressing challenges facing us today.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

The significance of this Total Compensation Agreement between the Coalition of Unions and King County should not be overlooked. This contract, along with Master Labor Agreement, not only brings equity to our membership but also proves Executive Dow Constantine is correct that by working with labor you can treat your employees with dignity and at the same time make government efficient for all the residents of King County.

Michael Gonzales, Senior Business Agent with Teamsters Local 174

For more information, contact:

Alex Fryer, Executive Office, 206-477-7966


King County Executive
Dow Constantine
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