(1) Within ten working days after the first Monday in September of every odd-numbered year, the state's bargaining representative and the bargaining representative for the appropriate bargaining unit shall attempt to agree on an interest arbitration panel consisting of three members to be used if the parties are not successful in negotiating a comprehensive collective bargaining agreement. Each party shall name one person to serve as its arbitrator on the arbitration panel. The two members so appointed shall meet within seven days following the appointment of the later appointed member to attempt to choose a third member to act as the neutral chair of the arbitration panel. Upon the failure of the arbitrators to select a neutral chair within seven days, the two appointed members shall use one of the two following options in the appointment of the third member, who shall act as chair of the panel: (a) By mutual consent, the two appointed members may jointly request the commission to, and the commission shall, appoint a third member within two days of such a request. Costs of each party's appointee shall be borne by each party respectively; other costs of the arbitration proceedings shall be borne by the commission; or (b) either party may apply to the commission, the federal mediation and conciliation service, or the American arbitration association to provide a list of five qualified arbitrators from which the neutral chair shall be chosen. Each party shall pay the fees and expenses of its arbitrator, and the fees and expenses of the neutral chair shall be shared equally between the parties. Immediately upon selecting an interest arbitration panel, the parties shall cooperate to reserve dates with the arbitration panel for potential arbitration between August 1st and September 15th of the following even-numbered year. The parties shall also prepare a schedule of at least five negotiation dates for the following year, absent an agreement to the contrary. The parties shall execute a written agreement before November 1st of each odd-numbered year setting forth the names of the members of the arbitration panel and the dates reserved for bargaining and arbitration. This subsection imposes minimum obligations only and is not intended to define or limit a party's full, good faith bargaining obligation under other sections of this chapter.
(2) The mediator or arbitration panel may consider only matters that are subject to bargaining under RCW 41.56.473
(3) The decision of an arbitration panel is not binding on the legislature and, if the legislature does not approve the funds necessary to implement provisions pertaining to wages and wage-related matters of an arbitrated collective bargaining agreement, is not binding on the state or the Washington state patrol.
(4) In making its determination, the arbitration panel shall be mindful of the legislative purpose enumerated in RCW 41.56.430
and, as additional standards or guidelines to aid it in reaching a decision, shall take into consideration the following factors:
(a) The constitutional and statutory authority of the employer;
(b) Stipulations of the parties;
(c) Comparison of the hours and conditions of employment of personnel involved in the proceedings with the hours and conditions of employment of like personnel of like employers of similar size on the west coast of the United States;
(d) Changes in any of the foregoing circumstances during the pendency of the proceedings; and
(e) Such other factors, not confined to the foregoing, which are normally or traditionally taken into consideration in the determination of matters that are subject to bargaining under RCW 41.56.473
[2008 c 149 § 1; 2005 c 438 § 2; 1999 c 217 § 4; 1993 c 351 § 1; 1988 c 110 § 2; 1987 c 135 § 3.]
was alphabetized pursuant to RCW 1.08.015
(2)(k), changing subsection (7) to subsection (14). RCW 41.56.030
was subsequently amended by 2011 1st sp.s. c 21 § 11, changing subsection (14) to subsection (13).
Severability—1987 c 135:
See note following RCW 41.56.020