Brian Coddington

Proposed police contract released

Brian Coddington, Communications Director, 509.625.6740


Thursday, February 18, 2021 at 10:30 a.m.

Proposed police contract released

Details of a proposed 5-year contract between the City and its police officers were finalized this week.

Mayor Nadine Woodward, members of the City Council, and Spokane Police Guild leadership announced last week that a tentative agreement had been reached. Attorneys for both parties finalized proposed contract language this week. The full City Council and the Guild membership must still vote on the contract before it becomes effective. That process could take into early March to complete.

“This contract meets the dual needs of the community to show support for its police officers and gain greater clarity on civilian oversight,” Woodward said last week about the contract. “Spokane and the Spokane Police Department have been a leader in police accountability reform and this contract is an opportunity to continue leading.”

City Council President Breean Beggs and councilmembers Lori Kinnear, who chairs the Public Safety Committee, Betsy Wilkerson, who chairs the Finance and Administration Committee, Candace Mumm, and Michael Cathcart, and Guild executive leadership members Kris Honaker and John Griffin joined Woodward in announcing the tentative agreement on Friday. The City Council is scheduled to consider the contract during its 6 pm meeting on March 1.

The average total cost of compensation (salary and benefits) is 3.5 percent for each of the five years of the contract. The total cost of the contract, estimated to be $9.5 million, will be paid for out of both the 2021 operating budget approved by the City Council in December and General Fund unappropriated reserves. Compensation for 2021 is within the 2021 budgeted amount the City Council approved in December and will be paid out of the current operating budget. Retroactive pay for years 2017 through 2020 will come from reserve funds that have been set aside from previous year’s budgets in anticipation of a contract agreement.

The contract makes significant additions to the section covering independent oversight. Notably, the contract:

  • Extends the authority of the ombudsperson to the assistant ombudsperson, including the ability to participate in internal affairs interviews, request further investigation, recommend mediation, make the determination that an investigation is thorough and objective, review and provide input on internal affairs case summaries, and attend review board meetings for uses of force, collisions, and deadly force
  • Expands ombudsperson access to body camera footage
  • Provides that the ombudsperson may appeal the classification of a complaint and type of investigation selected by the police chief
  • Clarifies that all complaints may be independently investigated by the ombudsperson
  • Establishes that the ombudsperson may request further investigation of major complaints and request that the police ombudsperson commission direct further investigation by the ombudsperson or a third-party independent investigator
  • Adds the authority for the ombudsperson to issue a closing report after the completion of a full department investigation, chief’s determination, and/or a third-party investigation that may opine on what happened

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