Last year, almost all county employees (with the notable exception of the sheriff's department) annual cost-of-living increases equivalent to 90 percent of the local rate of inflation. Translated into real terms, that would work out to a 2012 pay increase of 1.63 percent; however, because public officials can't change their pay in the middle of a term, the new, lower raises would kick in for five members in 2014, and for four members in 2016. Under county ordinance, council members are entitled to annual pay increases of 3 percent.
"King County employees have shown leadership over the last several years in a number of ways," said McDermott, who sponsored the legislation. "It is now our turn to show that leadership as well and ensure that our cost of living increases are tied to the exact same indicator that county employees are tied to."
Currently, King County Council members make $135,525---more than members of the Seattle City Council as well as members of other county councils in the region.