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posted by n1 on Thursday June 05 2014, @11:18AM   Printer-friendly
from the will-code-for-gold dept.

The NYT reports that in a unanimous vote, the Seattle City Council went where no big-city lawmakers have gone before, raising the local minimum wage to $15 an hour, more than double the federal minimum, and pushing Seattle to the forefront of urban efforts to address income inequality. "Even before the Great Recession a lot of us have started to have doubt and concern about the basic economic promise that underpins economic life in the United States," says Council Member Sally J. Clark. "Today Seattle answers that challenge." High-tech, fast-growing Seattle, population 634,535, is home to Amazon.com, Zillow, and Starbucks. It also has more than 100,000 workers whose incomes are insufficient to support their families, according to city figures and around 14% of Seattle's population lives below the poverty level. Some business owners have questioned the proposal saying that the city's booming economy is creating an illusion of permanence. "We're living in this bubble of Amazon, but that's not going to go on," says businessman Tom Douglas. "There's going to be some terrific price inflation."

 
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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by AnonTechie on Thursday June 05 2014, @11:57AM

    by AnonTechie (2275) on Thursday June 05 2014, @11:57AM (#51609) Journal

    As I understand, this minimum wage of US$ 15 is not effective now ... It is to be phased in over three to seven years, Seattle may have the highest minimum wage in America.

    http://blog.seattlepi.com/seattlepolitics/2014/06/02/seattle-set-to-enact-15-minimum-wage-a-phased-in-big-dream/#23925101=0 [seattlepi.com]

    --
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  • (Score: 2) by scruffybeard on Thursday June 05 2014, @06:33PM

    by scruffybeard (533) on Thursday June 05 2014, @06:33PM (#51831)

    From the NY Times article:

    Under the plan approved on Monday, the hourly wage will rise to $15 by 2017 for employers with more than 500 workers that do not provide health insurance, and by 2018 for those large employers who do. The minimum will be phased in through 2021 for smaller employers.

    Given that they are doubling the current minimum, a 7 year phase in seems like a good compromise to balance the perceived burden on smaller employers.