50% OF NYC VOTERS SUPPORT $13 MINIMUM WAGE: Quinnipiac University POLL

Broad support in NYC for higher minimum wage, poll shows

NEW YORK Thu Jun 12, 2014 3:14pm EDT

 NEW YORK (Reuters) – New Yorkers strongly back hiking the minimum wage, a poll showed on Thursday, while their support for the police department hit new lows under a mayor seeking to improve community relations.

Half of the city voters surveyed said they would support an increase in New York’s minimum wage to $13 an hour from $8, while a third approved of a hike to $10.10, the poll by Quinnipiac University showed.

Only about one in 10 said the rate should stay where it is, it said.

The findings come in the wake of New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s amending of a bill to boost the minimum wage.

The proposal, which Silver called a top priority as the legislative session comes to a close, would raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, indexed to inflation, and allow municipalities to push wages as much as 30 percent higher.

 

 

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/06/12/us-usa-new-york-police-idUSKBN0EN27920140612

 

21. Do you think the minimum wage in New York City of $8.00 an hour should be raised to $10.10 an hour, or to $13.00 an hour, or shouldn’t New York City’s minimum wage be raised?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Raised to $10.10     35%    35%    33%    42%    33%    37%    37%    32%    39%
Raised to $13.00     50     34     61     40     50     51     42     59     57
Shouldn't be raised  11     30      5     13     12     11     18      5      2
DK/NA                 3      1      1      6      5      2      2      4      2
 

http://www.quinnipiac.edu/news-and-events/quinnipiac-university-poll/new-york-city/release-detail?ReleaseID=2051

$13 Proposal Moves Ahead in San Diego

Minimum wage proposal moves forward

Posted: Jun 11, 2014 6:46 AM PDT

Video Report By Kelly Hessedal, Reporter

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A plan to put a proposed incremental increase in the minimum wage before San Diego voters in November was passed Wednesday by the City Council’s Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations Committee.

City Council President Todd Gloria is leading a drive to get the proposal, which would also require that employers provide five earned sick days each year, on the ballot in this fall’s general election. His plan, passed 4-1 at the committee level, will now go before the full City Council.

 

http://www.cbs8.com/story/25749337/minimum-wage-proposal-moves-forward

Chicago Moves Towards $15

At Wednesday’s City Council meeting, they turned up the political heat on Emanuel by introducing an ordinance that would phase in a requirement that Chicago businesses pay their employees $15 an hour.

Companies with more than $50 million in annual revenue would be required to pay $12.50 an hour within 90 days of passage and $15 an hour within a year.

Small- and medium-sized companies would have 15 months to get to $12 an hour, two years to pay $13 an hour, three years to reach $14 an hour and four years to get to $15 an hour. After that, Chicago’s minimum wage would rise annually to match the inflation rate.

For waitresses and other employees who rely on tips, the minimum wage would be 70 percent of the full minimum wage.

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/progressive-aldermen-propose-15-hour-chicago-minimum-wage/wed-05282014-1055am

http://www.progressillinois.com/quick-hits/content/2014/05/27/report-15-chicago-minimum-wage-would-lift-struggling-workers-citys-eco

http://populardemocracy.org/sites/default/files/RaiseChicago-Layout_final.pdf

Lift Up Oakland Gathers 33,000 Sigs for $12.25 Initiative

Lift Up Oakland, the union-backed campaign to raise Oakland’s hourly minimum wage next year from $8 to $12.25, submitted more than 33,600 signatures Friday to get their proposal on the November ballot.

The proposal also provides paid sick days and cost-of-living adjustments for the city’s lowest paid workers.

http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_25829674/oakland-union-backed-campaign-raise-minimum-wage-seeks

Chamber of Commerce: Wrong!

shortlink here:  http://wp.me/p2w2NH-zi

The Fair Wage Folks on the Eureka Chamber of Commerce Disingenuous Scare Tactics

May 21, 2014

Eureka, CA:

“And they were wrong!” Those are the words of Professor Scott Meyers-Lipton of San Jose State University when talking about the gloom and doom forecasts by opponents of Measure D, which raised the minimum wage for the City of San Jose. One year since San Jose residents passed Measure D, raising the minimum wage, employment is up, more businesses have been created, existing businesses thrive (including restaurants), and work hours remain the same. Here, the Eureka Chamber of Commerce doom and gloom response to the Eureka Fair Wage Act perpetrates the same old lie- that paying workers fairly kills jobs. The facts prove the Chamber’s statement to be nothing more than fear mongering. The Eureka Chamber of Commerce is just flat out wrong, as it raises the same old tired objections that were erroneously made about San Jose’s successful Measure D.

In California, higher minimum wage initiatives have passed whenever put to a vote of the people. The economies of those higher wage communities have done consistently better then their lower wage neighbors. This trend is also seen throughout the country. It is a shame that the Eureka Chamber failed to do any research. We could have provided the Chamber with the data from cities including San Jose,California and Santa Fe, New Mexico so it could make an informed decision and understand that Eureka will thrive with higher wages.  Many studies showing the positive, indisputable effects of raising the minimum wage are linked on our website, fairwages.org.

The business and labor playing fields are not level now. The Eureka Fair Wage Act will help to make things more level, that’s right, fair. Huge corporations like Walmart and Target use slave labor in China, abusing millions of workers abroad and crushing local competition here in the U.S. Look at all the empty store fronts they have created in Eureka.

The empirical data all show that measures raising the minimum wage boost local business and strengthen local economies. It is a shame that the Eureka Chamber of Commerce, an entity supported by local tax dollars, is shilling for out-of-town corporations and acting against the peoples’ well-being- with no regard for the facts.

Ref:  http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

Ref:  http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_25315215/san-jose-minimum-wage-year-old-success-story

 

The San Jose Minimum Wage Campaign Story

shortlink here:  http://wp.me/p2w2NH-zW

Gabriel Thompson in the Nation on the San Jose Minimum Wage Story

below are some brief sentences extracted from the full story that can be found here:

http://www.thenation.com/article/171510/how-students-san-jose-raised-minimum-wage#

In the spring of 2011, students in a sociology class at San Jose State University got together to brainstorm ways to make the world a better place. The course they were taking, Social Action, focused on theory and history while also encouraging students to “apply social change to the local community.” For Marisela Castro, a junior, the promise of action was precisely what she was looking for, and she already knew the issue she’d champion. She was on a mission to raise the minimum wage.

Like many students at San Jose State, Castro came from a household where low wages weren’t an abstract injustice. Her parents had labored in California’s fields, and Castro was putting in long hours at an after-school program to help pay for college. At work she kept seeing kids swipe extra snacks because food was running low at home. “Their parents were working nonstop but only making the minimum wage,” she tells me.

Castro knew that San Francisco had raised its minimum wage in 2003 and saw no reason San Jose couldn’t do the same. She pitched the idea, and two other students joined her group, mapping out a plan.

Professor Scott Myers-Lipton, who teaches the Social Action course, estimates that 80 percent of his students work at least thirty hours a week.

As more students got involved, Myers-Lipton discussed the project with Cindy Chavez, leader of the South Bay Labor Council, which represents more than ninety unions.

The Labor Council grew more excited. “I went to my board and said that there was this opportunity to partner with a diverse group of young people who are trying to raise the minimum wage,” explains Chavez. She said they needed $20,000 to start. Unions pledged that amount in three minutes. By the end of the meeting, they’d committed another $100,000.

To qualify for the November ballot, the campaign needed to turn in nearly 20,000 signatures. In a five-week period, with help from the Labor Council, it collected 36,000

 

Local Minimum Wage Laws – A Summary

shortlink here:  http://wp.me/p2w2NH-yI

mnemonic link here:  http://urlet.com/physical.shot

Report prepared for the Seattle Income Inequality Advisory Committee

http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

March 2014

Michael Reich

UC Berkeley Professor of Economics and Director, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley

Ken Jacobs

UC Berkeley, Chair, Center for Labor Research and Education, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment

Annette Bernhardt

UC Berkeley Visiting Professor of Sociology and Visiting Researcher, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment

Acknowledgments: We thank Miranda Dietz and Jenifer MacGillvary for their contributions to the research and writing of this report.

 

Contents

Executive Summary ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 1

1. Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 4

2. Profile of existing local minimum wage laws ………………………………………………………………………………. 4

3. How San Francisco enforces its minimum wage law ……………………………………………………………………. 7

4. The research literature on minimum wage effects …………………………………………………………………….. 10

5. The effects of minimum wage laws on workers and families ………………………………………………………. 10

6. The effects of minimum wage laws on businesses …………………………………………………………………….. 17

7. Conclusion ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26

References ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 28

Figures

Tables 1

Executive Summary

As cities and counties across the country increasingly debate whether to establish their own minimum wage laws, policymakers are understandably asking a host of questions. How are existing laws designed? What do we know about the impacts of local wage mandates on workers and their families? What does research tell us about the effect of local wage mandates on employment, and, in particular, do businesses move outside city or county borders in response? In this report, we address these and related questions.

Existing local minimum wage laws

Nine localities in the United States currently have enacted minimum wage laws: Albuquerque, NM; Bernalillo County, NM; Montgomery County, MD; Prince George’s County, MD; San Francisco, CA; San Jose, CA; Santa Fe, NM; Santa Fe County, NM; and Washington DC. (Richmond, CA, just voted to raise its minimum wage to $12.30 an hour by 2017, and a final vote is pending to pass the law.)

Current mandated wage levels range from $8.50 in Bernalillo County to $10.74 an hour in San Francisco. (New wage mandates in Washington DC and Santa Fe, Montgomery, and Prince George’s Counties go into effect later this year.)

On average, the existing local minimum wage laws have mandated total wage increases of 41.4 percent, many of them in multiple steps and the majority indexed to inflation thereafter. Localities with larger increases have been more likely to implement them in several steps. Across the localities, the average per-step minimum wage increase is 16.7 percent.

The nine laws are similar in covering the large majority of work that is performed within the boundaries of their cities or counties. San Francisco delayed coverage of nonprofits and small businesses (less than 10 employees) for one year. Santa Fe initially exempted small businesses but later amended its law to cover all establishments.

Two of the nine laws (San Francisco and San Jose) follow their state’s law in treating tipped workers the same as non-tipped workers, maintaining a uniform minimum wage for both groups. The other seven laws follow their states’ laws in maintaining a lower minimum wage for tipped workers (even as some increased the base wage for tipped workers). Several of the laws make similar provisions for commissioned workers.

How San Francisco enforces its minimum wage law

San Francisco uses a variety of high-impact enforcement and education strategies to ensure that the city’s minimum wage law has its intended effect.

2

From the beginning of 2004 to mid-2012, San Francisco’s enforcement agency processed 616 worker complaints related to the minimum wage and recovered $5.8 million in back wages on behalf of 3,004 workers. These are higher benchmarks than typically achieved by state and federal enforcement agencies.

San Francisco’s Office of Labor Standards Enforcement assigns 7.5 compliance officers to minimum wage enforcement on behalf of approximately 611,000 people employed in the city. These officers share responsibility for enforcement of the city’s paid sick leave law as well.

Approximately $979,000 supports the 7.5 positions devoted to minimum wage enforcement. In addition, $462,125 is contracted to community organizations that provide education, outreach, and case referrals, largely focused on minimum wage violations.

Effects of minimum wage laws on workers and families

Researchers consistently find that minimum wage laws raise pay for workers at the bottom rungs of the labor market. These increases include both directly affected workers (those earning between the old and the new minimum wage) as well as those indirectly affected (those earning above, but near, the new minimum wage).

Raising the minimum wage also pushes up the wage floor relative to the median wage, thereby reducing pay inequality.

Researchers consistently find that the affected workers are largely adults and disproportionately women and people of color.

New research on the effect of minimum wage increases documents important reductions in family poverty rates and enrollments in public assistance programs, such as food stamps.

Researchers have not estimated the amount of economic stimulus actually created by the new spending power of low-wage workers after minimum wage increases. We do know that low-wage workers and their families are likely to spend a significant portion of those increased earnings.

Effects of minimum wage laws on businesses

Economists have increasingly recognized that raising the minimum wage does not automatically mean that employment will fall. Increased labor costs can be absorbed through a variety of other channels, including savings from reduced worker turnover and improved efficiency, higher prices, and lower profits. Modern economics therefore regards the employment effect of a minimum wage increase as a question that is not decided by theory, but by empirical testing. 3

• Labor economists continue to debate the actual impacts of the minimum wage on employment and hours. We discuss in our assessment the most rigorous studies and offer a non-technical explanation of the nature of the disagreements in the research literature.

• To date, three rigorous studies have examined the employment impacts of San Francisco’s and Santa Fe’s local minimum wage laws. Each finds no statistically significant negative effects on employment or hours (including in low-wage industries such as restaurants).

• A larger body of economic research investigates the effects of state and federal minimum wage increases. These studies compare employment trends for states or counties that have different minimum wages. The best studies make comparisons to nearby states or counties to control for regional economic trends. These studies also find no statistically significant negative effects on employment or hours at an aggregate level or for low-wage industries such as restaurants and retail stores, or for specific groups of workers such as teens. These studies also do not find substitution effects (such as shifts in hiring away from black and Latino teens).

• Studies of the impact of minimum wage increases on restaurants’ operating costs find that an increase of 10 percent in the minimum wage increases operating costs by about 1 to 2 percent.

• Researchers find small one-time price increases in the restaurant industry (of about 0.7 percent following a 10 percent minimum wage increase), but not in other industries.

• Researchers find that increases in the minimum wage reduce employee turnover, translating into a reduction in direct costs (recruitment, selection, and training of new workers) and a reduction in indirect costs (lost sales, lower quality service, and lost productivity as the new workers learn on the job). Some studies have also identified additional benefits of higher wages, including improved morale, improved work performance, and reductions in absenteeism.

• Researchers have not found evidence that employers absorbed minimum wage increases by reducing health benefits or pensions.

In summary, our assessment of the research evidence indicates that minimum wage mandates raise the incomes of low-wage workers and their families, and that the costs to businesses are absorbed largely by reduced turnover costs and by small price increases among restaurants. That said, it is important to emphasize that existing research is necessarily limited to the range of minimum wage increases that have been implemented to date. While these studies are suggestive, they cannot tell us what is likely to happen when minimum wages are increased significantly beyond current local, state, or general.

 

The full report: http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

 

 

 

San Diego: $13.09/hr, Sick Pay Moves Toward November Ballot

Gloria, Lightner propose raising minimum wage to $13.09 by 2017

By DEAN CALBREATH, The Daily Transcript
Wednesday, April 23, 2014

San Diego’s minimum wage will rise from the current $8 per hour to $13.09 per hour over the next three years under a plan City Council President Todd Gloria and President Pro Tem Sherri Lightner unveiled on Wednesday.

If the proposal is approved by voters in November, it is projected to boost the wages of roughly 200,000 San Diegans by an average of $2,800 per year once it is fully phased in.

http://www.sddt.com/News/article.cfm?SourceCode=20140423czn