Seattle police union, city reach tentative contract agreement

SEATTLE -- Seattle's police guild and the City of Seattle have reached a tentative contact agreement, and the union board unanimously agreed to send it to members for a ratification vote, a source said Tuesday.

Seattle police officers have been working for more than 3 1/2 years without a contract.

Ballots on the proposed deal go out to more than 1,300 members Thursday. The Seattle Times said information sessions about the proposed contract would be held Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

It's a six-year deal that would be retroactive to 2015 and goes through 2020. The Seattle Times said officers and sergeants would received back pay covering raises for the past 3 1/2 years.

No details have been released yet on the amount of pay raises or benefits.

But a source told Q13 News' Brandi Kruse that the contract agreement, if approved, would restore the Seattle Police Department to first place on the pay scale for police departments in the state.

The Seattle Times reported that, under a final agreement, the union would also drop its unfair labor practice complaint against former Mayor Ed Murray's executive order that directed the police department to equip officers with body cameras.

Q13 News reporter Brandi Kruse said, “Striking a deal on a new contact has been increasingly important to Mayor Jenny Durkan and Police Chief Carmen Best, who was sworn in just last week. Both see it as a critical step to helping the department move past the last phase of a lengthy reform process. The tentative deal also comes as the department struggles with recruiting and retention of officers, and at a time of low morale among some of the agency’s rank and file.”