Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT)

Local 17 Union Representatives for WSDOT Members

Alexis Young: ext. 103
(Eastern, N.Central, S. Central, SW Region)
Sarah Lorenzini: ext. 110
(Ferries, HQ, NW Region, NW AWV, NW I-405, NW SR 520, Olympic, Real Estate Services)

2017-19 state contract ratified by members

The electronic ballot for the 2017-19 state contract closed at 12 p.m. on Fri., Sept. 30, with a significant majority of members voting to ratify the contract.

In accepting the terms of the new contract, the following changes will be enacted on July 1, 2017:

  • A 6% cost-of-living increase, which includes a 2% increase in July 2017, a 2% increase in July 2018, and a 2% increase in January 2019.
  • Additional targeted salary increases for more than 80% of our members
  • An increase in vacation accrual (for the first time in decades!)
  • An increase in the number of rest hours paid after 16 hours of work in a 24 hour period
  • The ability to grieve workplace behavior investigations
  • Improved supervisory pay for DOL-LSRs
  • A 53% increase in the night shift premium
  • Flexibility for employees' whose day off falls on a holiday
  • Maintainance of the healthcare premium-sharing ratio (85/15)

But our work is not done yet!

Members must be prepared to strongly lobby legislators to pass the state employee contracts. The funding of this agreement and all state employee union contracts will be determined by the 2017 legislature that must approve a budget to absorb the cost of the agreements. Lawmakers will be challenged by this while also considering the needs within the entire state budget including a State Supreme Court mandate that billions of new funding must be provided to basic education.

Additionally, Local 17 staff and members will challenge the State agencies covered by this process to continue to look at those classifications at DOL, DOT and WSP that did not receive special targeted classification salary increases. Members will be needed to get involved in this process as well.

You can read more about this year's negotiations, and find the details of the 2017-19 agreement below.

Summary of Changes

Full tentative agreement (red-lined)

Compensation Appendicies C and E

Agreement reached with state on 2017-19 contract

On Wed., Sept. 21, the Local 17 negotiations team came to final agreement on the 2017 -2019 contract with the State on the second and final day of mediation with state negotiators.

The Local 17 team, comprised of members from DOL, WSDOT and WSP was able to negotiate the largest cost-of-living increase state employees have seen in years totaling 6%! This increase covers all PTE17 members and will be distributed with a two percent raise in July 2017, a two percent raise in July 2018, and an unprecedented third raise of two percent  in January 2019. We were also successful in getting targeted increases for more than 80% of our state members. 

Also included in the settlement is an increase (for the first time in decades!) in vacation accrual, an increase in the number of hours paid after 16 hours of consecutive work, the ability to grieve workplace behavior, a 53% increase in the night shift premium, improved Supervisory pay for LSRs and flexibility for employees’ whose day off falls on a holiday regarding when they can take the holiday.  We were also able to maintain our 85/15 split for Healthcare and made an agreement with WSDOT management to discuss incentives for employees who obtain licenses and certifications. 

We have agreements with OFM and your agencies to meet and further discuss compensation for those the state refused to provide specific class salary increases:  Our DOL Auditors, DOT Transportation Planning Specialists and Technicians, WSP VIN Officers, and DOT Property and Acquisition Specialists.   We used logic, reason, and data to try and make the case for these classifications, but because past recruitment and retention trends don’t justify an increase based on OFM standards, these arguments fell on deaf ears. 

As we were wrapping up the mediation session, the state’s lead negotiator mentioned that no other unions pursues these issues as strongly as PTE17 does. These comments were echoed during the negotiations by many within the state bureaucracy including OFM analysts, our mediator and even agency executives.  Be proud that your union takes these steps and was the only one who took the state to mediation to ensure we advocated thoroughly and completely for all of our members.

Lastly, the Local 17 bargaining team would like to thank all the members who emailed, called, and delivered their messages to state and agency executives. These efforts did make a difference at the bargaining table and continues to build on the foundation for future talks. You sent the message to the state that Local 17 members aren’t afraid to step up and advocate for themselves and their colleagues. 

If you have any questions, please contact a member of your negotiations team:

Donna Blume (DOL), Randy Christensen (WSDOT), Josh Jeffries (WSDOT), Daniel Jones (WSDOT), Sarah Lorenzini (Local 17 Staff), Brendan Magee (WSP), Steve Morgans (WSDOT), Vince Oliveri (Local 17 Staff), Dean Robinson (WSP), Michael Wetsch (DOL), and Alexis Young (Local 17 Staff)

TAKE ACTION! Final push for 2017-19 state contract

While some other state unions have come to tentative agreement on a contract for the 2017-2019 biennium, Local 17 is still at the bargaining table working on getting fair increases for ALL of the classifications we represent.

To date, we've delivered hundreds of emails and messages to State Executives, used the state’s own data to show major compensation inequities, and discussed a variety of inconsistencies and contradictions within their own proposals -- yet state negotiators and agency management continue to ignore several of our classifications that are desperately in need of compensation updates. At the table this week, we continue to fight for remaining key issues, including:

  • a fair increase to the night-shift premium
  • a cost-of-living increase that keeps up with inflation
  • respect for our DOL Licensing Service Representatives
  • targeted increases for all Local 17 classifications

Despite the historical links between the planning and engineering series at WSDOT, the state continues to refuse any increase for our planning series. Similarly, they refuse to recognize the major compensation lag for our Property and Acquisition Specialists, DOL Auditors, and WSP VIN Officers.

We’ve made progress on other issues including vacation, and holding the line on healthcare costs, but we need your help to make that final push to get a fair contract for all Local 17 members.

TAKE ACTION!!! Click here to send a message to Governor Inslee and state executives to let them know that all of the Local 17 members who keep Washington residents moving and safe deserve a good contract with equitable raises for ALL classifications!

TAKE ACTION! Let state executives know that their hard-working employees deserve a raise!

The state has proposed a modest cost-of-living increase, and some targeted increases for several classifications at WSDOT, DOL, and WSP in the 2017-19 contract, but is avoiding addressing other classifications despite glaring evidence from their own salary survey about how far behind these salaries are when compared with the market rate in both the public and private sector.

TAKE ACTION!!! Click here to send a message to Governor Inslee and state executives to let them know that all of the Local 17 members who keep Washington residents moving and safe deserve a good contract with equitable raises for ALL classifications!

State employee birthdates prohibited from release to Freedom Foundation

In the on-going court case between public sector unions in Washington state -- including Local 17 -- and the Freedom Foundation, the Court Commissioner this week prohibited the release of state employee birthdates to the anti-union group pending the outcome of the appeal. Since this could take up to a year to work its way through the Appeals Court, this is a victory for state union members who are concerned about safeguarding their personal information.

In compliance with the Public Records Act (RCW 42.56.250), state employee names and work emails have been released to the Freedom Foundation. Local 17 will be working with other unions in the 2017 legislative session to ammend the requirements of this law to ensure that your privacy is protected.

State Negotiations Newsletter - August 2016

Previous Newsletters:

July 2016
June 2016
May 2016

2015-2017 State Contract

Governor Inslee signed the 2015-17 state contract in July. The cost-of-living-adjustment for state employess is effective July 1. An electronic version of the contract is available HERE.

WSDOT Rail Improves Rail Travel in the Pacific Northwest

King Street Station
King Street Station after the WSDOT Rail seismic retrofitting project was completed in 2013. Photo courtesy of WSDOT.

When people think of rail service in the Pacific Northwest, they most likely think about the Amtrak passenger train service, and freight operators like BNSF. But you might be surprised to learn that the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) – in conjunction with the Oregon Department of Transportation – actually manages its own passenger rail service, the Amtrak Cascades. Read the rest of the article here.

WSDOT Members
Help Preserve the Environment


Current Contract

To access an electronic version of the 2015-17 Collective Bargaining Agreement, click here.