Minimum wage

County Supervisors Consider Minimum Wage Increase

More than a year after San Jose upped its minimum wage to $10 an hour and as the conversation around pay increases for low-paid workers ramps up on a national scale, Santa Clara County is starting to look at enacting a similar measure for unincorporated parts of the region. Supervisor Dave Cortese, who’s also running for mayor of San Jose, will lead the discussion when the Board of Supervisors meets on Tuesday. A county ordinance comes with many more challenges than a citywide measure, Cortese notes.

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Keep the Change Going: Addressing Income Inequality in Silicon Valley

Income inequality is one of the biggest problems in Silicon Valley. We have at least 48 billionaires in the Bay Area alone. Yet, we also have thousands of people who struggle to survive working low wage jobs. Even the recent increase in the minimum wage in San Jose is not enough to live in an area where housing prices have soared, transportation costs continue to increase and most people have a negative net worth. But as individuals, we can make a difference.

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Measure D: Add It to the Tab

The new minimum wage law, Measure D, will take effect March 11, 2013. Many business owners I have spoken with plan to cover the increase in payroll costs by raising prices, reducing the hours of current employees and, in some case, simply eliminating positions altogether. But there is another option.


Youth Employment and Life Lessons

I remember making minimum wage, $3.35 per hour, when I worked at Burger King during high school. Most of my coworkers were high school students, college students and very few were adults. Prior to my job at Burger King, I had a paper route that, according to my memory, netted out to less than minimum wage. Many of these jobs no longer employ young people in the same numbers, but that does’t mean the city should raise the minimum wage.


Minimum Wage Increase Won’t Hurt Goodwill; It Is Goodwill

Why don’t members of our business community understand simple macroeconomics? Why are they the first to justify outrageous salaries for CEOs and the first to oppose an increase in the minimum wage? Measure D will enhance our local recovery and provide needed resources to people who need it. It’s the morally right thing to do.


Measure D Could Cost SJ Downtown Cinemas

Supporters of the minimum wage increase to San Jose businesses fail to consider the impacts of the small business owner trying to do business in this city. The South Bay is predominately suburban communities with no distinguishable borders. Case in point is Campbell, where the Camera 7 operates in the Pruneyard Shopping Center. Camera Cinemas also operates the Camera 3 and 12 in downtown San Jose. Only seven miles separate the facilities. This would certainly not be fair to the employees of the Campbell site where the minimum wage would not be affected. If this ordinance passes, and there is a need to downsize an operation — and in this economy there is a very real possibility of this — the San Jose facilities would be considered first, due to its higher overhead. I’m certain that any other business owner would have to make similar decisions if this ordinance passes.


Minimum Wage Effort Dealt Setback

Groups hoping to increase San Jose’s minimum wage in November through Measure D lost a court fight on two fronts Thursday. Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Mark H. Pierce ruled that a line about costs from Measure D’s ballot statement must be taken out because it is misleading. He also rejected arguments that opponents of Measure D should have to change their ballot statement because minimum wage backers “failed to establish by clear and convincing evidence that the subject arguments are false and misleading.”

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Council Meeting Focuses on Ballot Initiatives

The first City Council meeting of the 2012-13 fiscal year Tuesday will feature votes on approving language for three major ballot initiatives for November: a sales and use tax increase, a proposal to raise the city’s minimum wage, and an increase in the number of card tables at the city’s two casinos.

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The Great Minimum Wage War

The South Bay Labor Council held a kickoff party Tuesday night promoting the November ballot initiative to raise the city’s minimum wage to $10. While many expect the coming months of debate to be framed in 99 vs. 1 percent terms—labor groups and low-wage workers battling lobbying heavyweights like the California Restaurant Association (word is the lobbyist group has already kicked in millions to defeat a similar federal ballot measure)—it seems some incongruous characters in Silicon Valley are working toward a compromise.

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Got Signatures? Go to the Ballot

An explanation of how the ballot initiative process has affected the local political landscape—including a breakdown of four initiatives created in the last year—and an update on the $1 million check submitted by a developer to the city last week.

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Minimum Wage Goes to Council

Update: The San Jose City Council voted unanimously to send a minimum wage proposal to voters after it failed to be adopted by San Jose City Council Tuesday night. The motion to immediately adopt a higher minimum wage than surrounding cities failed on an 8-3 vote. The proposal will raise the minimum hourly wage in San Jose from $8 to $10, if passed by voters.


Sign Here, Please

I predict going forward that groups sponsoring ballot initiatives will be a constant part of the political landscape in San Jose, similar to the outside funding of planning department ordinances by third parties to move forward on regulations. The minimum wage initiative recently gathered and submitted the required signatures last week, and action will be taken at the May 22 City Council meeting. A library initiative is also in the process of gathering signatures for a November election.


Minimum Wage Raise in San Jose?

A student-organized push to raise the minimum wage in San Jose looks like it has a chance to make its way on the ballot. Roughly 35,000 signatures were reportedly submitted Wednesday by a group led by San Jose State students. Those signatures will need to be verified by the county Registrar of Voters. For now, the San Jose/Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce is taking a wait-and-see approach to the initiative.