Here's a (link) to a Motley Fool article which talks about Whatcom County being one of those places where your work is worth less because wages went down.
It's interesting that the article recommends steering clear of Whatcom County because of the drop in wages, relying solely on second quarter data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It doesn't go into any detail on why this wage drop took place in that particular quarter.
One main reason wages went down compared to 2012 was the BP influx of 3,000 contract workers who were trying to repair BP Cherry Point following the February 2012 fire. Whatcom's weekly wages are actually up 1.9 percent compared to the same period in 2011. Here's a (link) to some details