Wage Series Part 10: 2017 Economic Conditions and A Look Ahead

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

This is the final article in our 10 part economy and wage settlement series.

Even before Donald Trump was elected president indicators pointed to the return of both the local and the US CPI to a 2% + figure for the next few years, something previously discussed in this series. There are some economists that point to the bond market activity as indications of pending rising inflation. Others are not convinced that even the more dramatic actions of a new administration will have an immediate effect on inflation because there are some unchanging realities that are pushing inflation downward. Greg Ip, in his article Trumpflation: Not Now, Maybe Later, offers the following projections:

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Wage Series Part 9: Does Geographic Location Matter?

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

In the previous two articles in this wage series, we discussed the extent to which population and assessed valuation correlated with wage rankings. In this article, we discussed geographic location and the effect of various labor markets on public safety wages.

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Wage Series Part 8: Does Assessed Valuation Matter?

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

In the last issue we discussed whether – and to what extent — population influenced a jurisdiction’s relative wage ranking. In this article we discussed to what extent assessed valuation influences that ranking.

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Wage Series Part 7: Does Size Matter?

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

In last three parts of the wage series we have discussed State wage rankings for the various public safety classifications.  In the next part of the wage series we run our series of articles on factors that might influence or explain, at least in part, those wage rankings, with updated 2016 wage rankings.

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Part 6: Dispatcher and Records Clerk Wages

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

This is part 6 of our continued series on Washington public safety employee wages. In this issue we report on wage rankings for 911 dispatchers and police records clerks.

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Wage Series Part 5: Firefighter and Corrections Rankings

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

This is Part 5 of our 10 Part 2016 Wage Series. In our last article, we covered Commissioned Deputy and Police Officer Wages.  In this article, we turn to Firefighter and Corrections Officer Wages.  We’ll cover Dispatcher and Records Clerk Wages in the next article.

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Wage Series Part 4: How Do Your Wages Stack Up: Statewide Commissioned City and County Wage Rankings

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

In part 4 of our on-going wage series we now turn to the rankings of County Deputy and City Police Officer rankings throughout the State. This series always produces both expected and unexpected information about the relative standing of jurisdictions.

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Wage Series Part 3: Current Economic Conditions 

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

This is the third article in our 10 part series reporting on contract settlement trends.  This article highlights some of the recent economic developments most likely to impact your negotiations outlook.

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Wage Series Part 2: Recent Wage Settlement Trends in Washington Public Safety Labor Contracts — An Ever So Slightly Rising Trend Line

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

This is the second part of our 10 part Fall 2016 wage series.  In this article we take a look at recent contract settlements and examine how those trends vary from recent previous years.  Our view of 2015 and 2016 settlements and what we have so far from 2017 indicates that the Washington State public sector wages are a mirror of national wage stagnation.  We see some wage increases with little substantial “real wage” growth (as measured once controlled for inflation).  Whether a growing economy eventually will accelerate these is something we’ll discuss later in this series.

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Wage Series Part 1: Latest CPI Shows Seattle and All Cities CPI on the Rise

By Jim Cline and Kate Kremer

The latest inflation reports show CPI on the rise.  In the last two month reporting period the Seattle CPI (W) has jumped from 2.0% to 2.6% and the All-Cities (W) has doubled from 0.7% to 1.4%.

This is the first of an 11 part series addressing current economic conditions and wage settlement trends.  In this Fall 2016 Wage Series we’ll bring you an update on CPI and economic developments, wage settlements, interest arbitration trends, statewide wage rankings for public safety classifications across the State, and an in-depth analysis of what factors appear to be impacting those rankings and settlements.

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