Mayor Murray announces $15 minimum wage plan

By KTTH | May 1, 2014

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced the consensus plan for increasing the minimum wage to $15 in Seattle on Thursday.

Expectedly, Murray did not listen to $15 minimum wage skeptics, who predict massive job losses and businesses moving out of Seattle. Instead, he forged ahead with a plan to install the wage with these details:

  • Small businesses, defined as having 500 or fewer employees, get seven years to increase minimum wage to $15 per hour; during those seven years, the employers can count tips and benefits, also called “total compensation” toward the $15 wage
  • Small businesses have to stop counting tips and benefits after the seven-year phase concludes
  • Large businesses, defined as having 500 or more employees, get a three-year phase in; if the large business provides its employees with healthcare, they get a four-year phase in
  • After seven years, minimum wage would increase based on the consumer price index, also called inflation
  • Murray said that 21 of 24 members of his minimum wage committee agree to the plan

KTTH host Ben Shapiro said after Murray’s announcement that the plan was a way to obscure the economic damage from increasing the wage to $15.

“This is a lengthy phase-in designed to obscure the results of raising the minimum wage. By doing it in a piecemeal fashion rather than all at once, Murray and his allies can now claim that outside factors depress employment, or ignore outside factors increasing employment rather than allowing immediate $15 minimum wage to solve once and for all the question of whether a mandated increase in minimum wage leads to business stagnation,” he said.

Host Michael Medved called the whole affair a “boneheaded disaster” that will surely still kill or move small businesses outside of Seattle.

“It’s inevitable for things like restaurants to close; this is going to be a true killer,” Medved said. “Even ramped up over seven years.”

Medved wondered what would happen to all the employees who make less than $15 per hour, but more than the current minimum, $9.32. If an employee has worked himself up to making $12.50 an hour, and then he is suddenly making the same as someone who just started, won’t that kill morale?

“It’s going to lead to a lot of departures and closures,” Medved said.

Socialist Seattle Councilwoman Kshama Sawant, who brought the $15 wage push to the forefront in Seattle, reacted negatively to Murray’s proposal. She said she brought a proposal to Murray’s committee that was backed by workers, and that Murray’s plan still has to be voted on by the Council.

“Our work is far from done,” she said.

comments powered by Disqus
Top stories

Don't miss
  • debate
    Freedom Series - The First 100 Days Michael Medved, Todd Herman, Chairman of the King County Republican Party Lori Sotelo, and Former State Representative, County Councilman, and GOP State Chairman Chris Vance debate President Trump's first 100 Days at the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma.

Don't miss
  • debate
    Audio: The Fight For the White House Ben Shapiro, Michael Medved and David Boze analyze the current crop of GOP presidential hopefuls, with an eye towards who can best take back the White House and defeat Hillary Clinton. Moderated by Jason Rantz.

Don't miss
  • debate
    Video: Gun rights debate In KTTH’s third Freedom Series Debate, hosts Ben Shapiro and Michael Medved sat down with KIRO Radio’s Dave Ross and Ralph Fascitelli, President of Washington Ceasefire, to take on initiatives 594 and 591 and other gun rights issues.

Don't miss

Don't miss

Real Estate Corner
  • Robin's Real Estate Reality Talk
    Robin's Real Estate Reality Talk We are in a very unique market. Right now our area is showing signs of recovery. We are moving in a positive direction and gaining equity though are ways off from where we were in 2006 and 2007.