Signed budget funds contracts

The legislature narrowly avoided government shutdown by reaching a compromise on the budget. Gov. Inslee signed the deal in the eleventh hour. The legislature then headed into a third special session to continue their arguing. Read more in The Olympian or The Spokesman-Review.

Thank you to all members who fought for these contracts. The contracts will be signed by Gov. Inslee on July 9.


#Public Service Matterspublic service matters

On April 18, WPEA members joined fellow state employees at rallies in communities across Washington state to show that public service matters and to call for funding our collective bargaining agreements.

We received support from small business owners who understand that state employees don’t just provide vital public services. They also shop at local businesses and have a huge economic impact.
Read more on The Stand


WPEA scholarship program expanded

The WPEA executive board expanded the scholarship program in 2014, making more scholarships available, and opening the scholarships up to members and their families.

The scholarships, which will be awarded for use in Fall 2015, include:

Applications are due at WPEA headquarters by July 15, 2015. 
View or download the application.


Editorials slam Senate budget

In reviewing the Senate budget, The Olympian's editorial board gets it right: "It is full of as yet unexamined budget complexities but one thing is obvious: It balances the books too heavily on the backs of state employees." Read the full editorial.

Read The Olympian’s editorial endorsing the House budget.

The Daily Herald's editorial board agrees: "The tax increases proposed are fair and allow the state to begin making up for past losses to programs and employee compensation." Read the full editorial.

Congratulations to Olympic College!

Olympic College was one of the ten finalists for the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence. Learn more about the Aspen Prize.


Member Profile

Astronomy bookPaul BaldwinBook projectorPaul Baldwin at work at WSSB

At first glance, Paul Baldwin’s classroom probably looks like your typical science class.  The room is filled with scales, beakers, books, and skeletons.  But when you look closer, you’ll notice there’s a lot more you can touch, like the models of cell division, of the human organs, of plants.

Paul teaches middle and high school science, covering everything from biology to physical sciences.  But as a teacher at the Washington State School for the Blind in Vancouver, things are a little different in his classroom. Read more...


Rally calls for Shared ProsperityShared Prosperity rally

On February 20, WPEA members joined 800 other labor supporters at the state Capitol to rally for Shared Prosperity. Read more on the Washington State Labor Council's news site, The Stand.

“Workers deserve a share of the prosperity that they create and the economy grows when this happens. We need to raise wages and grow the economy,” said WSLC President Jeff Johnson as he opened the rally.


Members approve contracts for 2015-17

The contracts include two across-the-board increases: a 3% raise in July 2015 and approximately 1.8% in 2016.

The new health benefits agreement maintains the 85/15 premium split and limits out-of-pocket cost increases in the UMP Classic plan.


News links

Labor news and links from WSLC

Retirement Crisis: The Great 401(k) Experiment Has Failed for Many Americans NBC News, 3/23/2015

State House votes to raise hourly minimum wage to $12
Peninsula Daily News, 3/3/2015

State still needs to raise new revenue The Olympian, 2/26/2015

50 Years Of Shrinking Union Membership, In One Map
NPR's Planet Money, 2/23/2015

The Cost of a Decline in Unions
The New York Times, 2/19/2015

State lawmakers could see 11 percent raises
The Olympian, 1/22/2015