When we fight, we win!

Public Sector

King County Total Comp Bargaining is Down to the Economics


Right now, Local 117 members who serve on the bargaining committee of the King County Coalition of Unions are gathering to continue total compensation contract negotiations for the 2017-2018 biennium. Today’s bargaining session will kick off at 9 A.M. and is expected to last most of the day.  

We are several months into the process, so negotiations are focusing almost exclusively on the most important economic issues. The County and the Coalition of Unions exchanged initial proposals over all economic elements of your contract and we anticipate that, in today’s negotiations, the employer will present a comprehensive counterproposal to our initial proposal.

The County will likely respond to our call for a general across-the-board wage increase each year of the two year contract, as well as increased contributions for medical benefits that avoids any employee premium share, and the creation of additional steps to the pay structure that would acknowledge the importance of longevity.

King County Members: Make Your Voice Count!

FSC_Seal_blue.jpgOn Thursday, April 28, we will be conducting drop-in interviews for all King County Teamsters at the King Street building as a part of our Every Voice Counts campaign.

This is your opportunity to share ideas with your co-workers and voice your concerns about your workplace.  

We will be meeting in the North/South Wind Conference Room from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm on April 28.  Your interview will take about 20 minutes. Light snacks and refreshments will be provided.  Can you make it?

Our goal is to connect with every Teamster member at King County and engage more members in their union.  Member involvement is key to a strong union and a better workplace.

You can learn more about our Every Voice Counts campaign and read member stories on our new campaign website at FamilyStrengthCommunity.org. 

You can RSVP for your interview here. If you have any questions, please let me know.

Thanks and hope to see you on April 28!

Supreme Court Reaffirms Collective Bargaining

TUKWILA — Today the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a victory to working people in its decision in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association. The court’s 4-4 decision leaves intact the precedent set by Abood v. Detroit Board of Education that has served as law for four decades.  

“Today’s ruling affirms 40 years of precedent that working people have the right to a strong and effective union. Union rights are fundamental to an economy that works for all Americans. The Supreme Court rejected a political scheme to silence working people,” said John Scearcy, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 117.

The Friedrichs case challenged the constitutionality of fair-share fees. These are the fees paid by non-union members who share the wages, benefits and working conditions collectively bargained for them by their union. The fees are used to cover the cost of bargaining and do not go towards political activity.

King County Total Comp Update - March 1

I wanted to pass along the following update from the chairs of the total comp bargaining committee that was distributed yesterday:

At the 02/17 Total Compensation Master Committee meeting, Labor and Management continued discussion on conceptual framework for health benefits moving forward. Details need to still be worked out, and more information is forthcoming.

The Wage Workgroup presented their list of options. Four options were identified by Labor as their top priorities and four options were identified by Management as their top priorities. Below is the list that was identified:


  • Economic Stability
    • Option 1.a) Fixed % annual wage increases
    • Option 1.c) Keep up with cost of living (within Seattle and outlying areas in King County re: consumer prices, housing costs, etc.)
  • Create Desirable Employment Package
    • Option 1.b) Reconsider the square table system of salary progression (e.g. narrow vs. broad band; above top step merit; longevity; progression based on merit)
  • Equity
    • Option 3.e) Living wage


  • Economic Stability
    • Option 1.a) Fixed % annual wage increases
  • Create Desirable Employment Package
    • Option 1.b) Reconsider the square table system of salary progression (e.g. narrow vs. broad band; above top step merit; longevity; progression based on merit)
    • Option 2.c) Pay premiums a/k/a “add-to-pays” (shift and work premiums, etc.)
  • Support delivery of value to the community we serve
    • Option 5.a) Pay incentives based on continuous improvement and efficiencies

Leaves Workgroup will be presenting and Picasso (Other) Workgroup will present if time allows at the next bargaining session on March 2nd.

Documents provided in this email will also be provided on the SharePoint site. As a reminder, the Total Compensation Master Committee SharePoint site can be found here.

Thank you for all that you do. The next negotiations session will take place on March 2 at the Teamsters Hall.

Teamster Talk: Our Shared Values Make us Strong

Teamster-Talk-2016.jpgThe new issue of Teamster Talk, our Local 117 newsletter is now available. 

In this issue, you'll find articles on our new FamilyStrengthCommunity.org website, a piece on the origin of our Weingarten Rights by Secretary-Treasurer Scearcy, and our support of workers fighting to win a union at Taylor Farms.

The newsletter also highlights several upcoming events, including our Shop Steward seminar on March 12, our Veterans Caucus meeting on April 2, and our Casino night fundraiser on April 16.

Learn more by checking out a PDF of Teamster Talk here and be sure to attend our upcoming membership meeting on March 17. Together we can build a union that is strong.

Scholarship Opportunity for Pierce County Teamsters


Are you a Local 117 member, live in Pierce County, and have a kid heading off to trade school or college? 

The Pierce County Labor Community Services Agency is now accepting applications for the Jerry Beckendorf Community Service Scholarship for 2016!

Jerry Beckendorf has been a life-long community volunteer and activist. He served as the Labor Liaison between United Way of Pierce County and the Pierce County Central Labor Council for 15 years and continues to dedicate his time to helping others.

Members Visit the Capitol, Tell Lawmakers Why Public Service Matters

house.jpgOn President’s Day, a group of Teamsters spent their day off in Olympia, hustling around the State Capitol, seeking out legislators in their offices, and pulling them from the Senate floor.

This was our Public Service Matters lobby day, a chance for members to establish relationships with their representatives, engage in spirited discussion about critical issues, and remind lawmakers about the important services that public employees provide to our communities.

Randy Marquis, a Shop Steward and heavy equipment operator at the City of Tacoma, spoke about his experience.

“I had an absolute blast! This was my first time lobbying in Olympia, but it will definitely not be my last. I felt that the legislators we got to talk to were very courteous and willing to listen. It was fascinating to see how things get done in our state government,” he said.

King County Paid Parental Leave Vote - The Results Are In

We have tallied the votes for all Teamster units at King County regarding Paid Parental Leave. A majority of Local 117 represented units voted to accept the pilot program, while three voted to reject the program.

To see how your group voted, please view the results below.

Local 117 Units that Voted to Accept the Paid Parental Leave Pilot Program: 

Local 117 Units that Voted to Reject the Paid Parental Leave Pilot Program: 

  • Wastewater Treatment Supervisors 
  • Wastewater Treatment Managers
  • DOT Supervisors

The Latest on King County Total Comp

As you know, Teamsters 117 is part of a coalition that is in the process of bargaining with King County over all compensable items in your collective bargaining agreement.

During this process, we will be posting updates and documents related to bargaining. The updates are distributed to all represented members whose unions are participating in the coalition.

The following documents have been used in presentations during total comp negotiations:

As soon as we have additional updates or documents to share, we will post them. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or talk to your bargaining committee member.

Thank you for your service to the residents of King County!

Our new website – family, strength, community – is live!


We’ve just launched an exciting new website for members of Teamsters 117. It focuses on the values we share as Teamsters – values like family, strength, and community.

In fact, that’s exactly where you can find it on the web, at FamilyStrengthCommunity.org.

On the site, you’ll see things we can all agree on – the need for wages to raise a family, strong and healthy communities, a secure retirement, and respect.

These are the things that unite us as Teamsters and what we are all fighting for.