WA Land Commissioner announces pay freezes and furloughs

Washington Public Lands Commissioner Hilary Franz has announced agency furloughs and a suspension of planned 3 percent salary increases for agency leaders and managers as part of cost-saving measures within the state Department of Natural Resources.

Due to the economic impacts caused by COVID-19, the state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council last week estimated a drop of roughly $9 billion in the state general fund budget through 2023.

Hillary Franz

Many DNR employees will be required to take one day of furlough per week for the next four weeks. Workers will also be required to take four additional furlough days August through November. Employees who perform work critical to the health and safety of Washingtonians, like wildland firefighters, are exempt from furloughs.

Suspending of the 3 percent general wage increase scheduled for July 1st will affect all Washington management Service and Exempt Management Service employees, with the exception of employees who make $53,000 or less per year.

Additionally, Lands Commissioner Franz will donate her scheduled wage increase – just over $7,100 – to Northwest Harvest and Second Harvest, both of which are nonprofit food banks. (Washington Public Lands Commissioner)

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