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Author Topic: Dems eyeing $2 raise for minimum earners  (Read 1441 times)
Beach Bum
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« on: December 22, 2006, 04:00:12 PM »

Well this didn't take long.   Roll Eyes

Dems eyeing $2 raise for minimum earners

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Imagine what it would be like to work without a pay raise for nearly 10 years.

That's been the plight of some workers who for almost the past decade have been earning the federal minimum wage. Their last pay increase -- to $5.15 an hour -- came in 1997.

There could be some relief in sight.

When the Democrat-controlled 110th Congress convenes in early January, a top priority is boosting the federal minimum wage to $7.25 an hour. The increase is likely to be phased in, perhaps over 26 months. (Watch why some say a minimum wage hike is long overdue )

Alice Laguerre is among the millions of workers now earning less than $7.25 an hour.

She makes $6.55 an hour driving cars headed for the auction blocks in Orlando, Florida, and says a boost in the federal minimum wage would help her build a nest egg for emergencies.

"I would be able to save more," says Laguerre, a part-time worker. "I've always been thrifty with money. When I was young, I'd take a nickel and stretch it five ways."

That can be tough these days, acknowledges Laguerre, 53, after paying the monthly rent and utilities on her two-bedroom apartment and after recently buying a car -- a blue 1994 Buick Century.

Employers could feel squeeze
On the other side of the minimum wage debate is employer Wayne Reaves, president of Manna Enterprises Inc., in Anniston, Alabama, who says he may boost menu prices and cut workers' hours at his fast-food restaurants, which serve up hamburgers, fried chicken, gravy and biscuits and other fare, if the federal wage is lifted.

The average hourly rate for his workers is around $6.39. All of his workers are paid above the current $5.15 minimum, he says. The lowest hourly rate is around $5.50, while a recently hired biscuit maker fetched $8 an hour.

"The market is working. My position is let market forces drive wages. But it isn't going to happen because this is a political issue now," Reaves laments. "This will have a negative impact on the people it is supposed to help."

The federal minimum wage is like a national wage floor, though some people can be paid less under certain circumstances. States can set minimum wages above the federal level; more than two dozen states plus the District of Columbia do.

The last time the federal minimum wage went up was in 1997. That's the longest stretch without an increase since the minimum wage was established in 1938. Inflation has eroded the minimum wage's buying power to the lowest level in about 50 years.

Organized labor and other supporters of boosting the minimum wage contend it will help the working poor.

Business groups and other opponents counter that it could lead to higher prices for good and services or force companies, especially smaller ones, to pink-slip some entry-level, low-skilled workers or hire fewer such workers. Companies' profits also could be crimped. . . .

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/12/22/minimum.wage.ap/index.html

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« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2006, 04:26:51 PM »

I don't like this idea at all.  People at the $8 mark already are going to demand $10.  People making $20 will find a way to bitch about not making $25, to keep up with the % change.  The only people earning 5.15 at the moment are, well... In FL, with the shitty standard of living and low wages, McD starts at $7 an hour and our state minnie is still 5.15 I believe.

I absolutely cannot fathom any job where 5.15 an hour is still paid.  Can anyone list the job title and location of any that you know about?  The only effects, IMO, of raising it will be to jack up prices for those kids already making 7 (the supply/demand settle level) who suddenly demand 9, when the diner cannot afford it.
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« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2006, 04:48:33 PM »

Nobody who wants to be competitive pays minimum wage.  Many states have also raised their minimum wage above $5.15.  The only category of workers, other than fast food workers, who may receive minimum wage are waiters and waitresses, but they make more off tips.  The market usually takes care of itself.
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Hugo Chavez
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« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2006, 05:10:04 PM »

If everybody is indeed already paying well over min wage, then there will be no impact unless the companies use it as an excuse to hike their prices... I mean if they're already paying up toward what it's going to be raised to, well???  This is mostly symbolic.  In states that raised their min wage, like here in Colorado, there was 0 negative effect.  If there is an affect here, it's going to be by corporations being political against the move.
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« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2006, 12:39:43 AM »

IMO, the people making $7.15 an hour are going to be pissed.  They're going to demand a raise, as they worked up to 7.15 an hour and now they can get that anywhere.
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« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2006, 01:09:32 AM »

IMO, the people making $7.15 an hour are going to be pissed.  They're going to demand a raise, as they worked up to 7.15 an hour and now they can get that anywhere.

If they are working for 7.15 an hour, they are pissed already. Wink
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« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2006, 01:11:49 AM »

IMO, the people making $7.15 an hour are going to be pissed.  They're going to demand a raise, as they worked up to 7.15 an hour and now they can get that anywhere.
But who cares if they're pissed, I guarantee not the employer paying them 7.15 an hour...  They can demand all they want and I doubt they're going to do that.  If they're working for that, they probably are unskilled and need the job, they're not going to be bitching very hard to the boss...  Was there a major meltdown in the florida economy when they raised the min to 6.40? Plus Beach said it, nobody is paying 5.15 an hour, so if that's the case, then the guy now making 7.15 an hour doesn't have some guy under him now being bumped to his pay rate.
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« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2006, 01:18:06 AM »

All fast food places should have a fat tax of 25%, and give the workers the money. problem solved. it would still be the cheapest food available.
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« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2006, 08:35:28 AM »

All fast food places should have a fat tax of 25%, and give the workers the money. problem solved. it would still be the cheapest food available.

My Saus/Egg/Chz McGriddle meal would go from $4.76 to $5.95

Then I'd have to raise website prices to $375.

Then the universe as we know it would collapse.
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« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2006, 09:04:06 AM »

What a crappy time for this to happen!   lol    Oh well, just a few more cents out of my pocket..
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« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2006, 09:09:20 AM »

My Saus/Egg/Chz McGriddle meal would go from $4.76 to $5.95

Then I'd have to raise website prices to $375.

Then the universe as we know it would collapse.

$5.95 is still cheap though Rob. Besides, if people want to eat that garbage,they should be taxed.
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« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2006, 09:13:19 AM »

What a crappy time for this to happen!   lol    Oh well, just a few more cents out of my pocket..

Exactly, and you just might have to raise your rates which means you stand a chance of either losing or driving away business!
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« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2006, 09:14:32 AM »

Exactly, and you just might have to raise your rates which means you stand a chance of either losing or driving away business!

What do you think about a fat tax Mr. I? For fatasses that eat fast food.
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« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2006, 01:39:24 PM »

All fast food places should have a fat tax of 25%, and give the workers the money. problem solved. it would still be the cheapest food available.

Great idea and they should also stop granting disablity to fat people and they should also take away their medicare.
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« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2006, 06:11:49 PM »

What do you think about a fat tax Mr. I? For fatasses that eat fast food.

No way...the fatter they are the more business for me, I train alot of athletes, but weight loss and fitness is where the money is made!!
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« Reply #15 on: December 23, 2006, 06:17:56 PM »

Anyone who is against an increase in the minimum wage should be shot. NOBODY can live on 5 bucks an hour. I know of several places around here that only pay about 7 bucks an hour for very hard,hot,factory work,so I know the fast food places can't be paying that good. Typical republican bullshit. I am not for the give away programs typically associated with democrats but give people less fortunate at least a chance to better themselves.
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« Reply #16 on: December 23, 2006, 06:46:43 PM »

This wouldn't be a fucking issue if they had slowly and steadily raise the min to be the same...  Next time, don't get all pissy when a small rate increase is proposed and it won't be an issue when they need to catch up for years and years of nothing done. Boo fucking hooo.. Rob, I don't fucking feel sorry for you paying 5 bucks for a MickyD's greace cake.  Roll Eyes And I don't feel sorry for the Armz being a cheap ass.  I though Beach was finally right on something and nobody was paying much under the new proposed rate anyway... Roll Eyes  I guess there are some holdouts...
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« Reply #17 on: December 24, 2006, 01:44:53 AM »

IMO, in our free market, supply and demand even this out.  Very rare are the jobs where $5.15 is the pay rate, because nobody will work for it.  McD pays $7 in my town to start. 

While many repubs are pricks and don't want to interrupt their donor's sweatshop human capital operating costs, there are going to be some serious fluctuations which will cost some foliks their business.

a good compromise would be what gt said... raise it slowly, perhaps with inflation, each quater, even if it's 3 cents or something... or maybe once a year.  Going ten years is just insane.  NEITHER president - clinton or bush - raised it from 1997 on.
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« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2006, 02:01:49 AM »

  I can't give you exact examples of what places such as McD pay, but I know that some factory jobs around here start people out at less than 9 bucks an hour....I have a feeling many of you guys are educated,which is great,and have never had to actually WORK,in a physical sense...for 10-12 hours in a hot ass factory...I HAVE and I can tell you even the most basic unskilled job is worth way more than any 8 bucks an hour...but that's what many of them pay. With the minimum wage so low,all they have to do is pay a little better than the minimim,and unskilled people have no choice but to work for the pay offered because their only alternative is the fast food places.It is easy for you guys to say "Well,that's their fault for not getting an education"..but that is total bullshit in many situations.Some people do not have the oportunities that many of us had.The majority of the fast food jobs are usually held by young kids in school or what have you.If those jobs paid better then other places,where the workers actually deserve way more than they're paid,would have to pay better to compete.
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« Reply #19 on: December 24, 2006, 02:05:51 AM »

i am sure there are pockets of place in the nation where employers do have unusual amounts of leverage and CAN work folks for 5.15, and it's probably a good idea to raise it some.  But raising it 35% overnight... that just doesn't contribute to stability, something we def need right now.  At least stagger it, I dunno.  it doesn't affect me.   but I see there being serious issues as a result of some company's production/mnfg payrolls jumping 35% overnight.  Those costs will be reflected somewhere - and it'll either be higher consumer prices, or the owners coming to the realization that outsourcing the work is a better idea - goodbye american jobs Sad
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« Reply #20 on: December 24, 2006, 02:09:35 AM »

i am sure there are pockets of place in the nation where employers do have unusual amounts of leverage and CAN work folks for 5.15, and it's probably a good idea to raise it some.  But raising it 35% overnight... that just doesn't contribute to stability, something we def need right now.  At least stagger it, I dunno.  it doesn't affect me.   but I see there being serious issues as a result of some company's production/mnfg payrolls jumping 35% overnight.  Those costs will be reflected somewhere - and it'll either be higher consumer prices, or the owners coming to the realization that outsourcing the work is a better idea - goodbye american jobs Sad

  You make a very good argument,and I do not really disagree about the passing on of the costs and what not...and I have already been through the outsourcing situation,and it sucks...I think you are correct about the sudden increase...my only argument is that it should be higher than it is. This increase is long overdue,as you already mentioned.
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« Reply #21 on: December 24, 2006, 02:16:16 AM »

I'm all for higher wages.   Just not when it'll disrupt the economy, cost US jobs, or other adverse effect.   

Outsourcing is a very dangerous things - it can both help and destory the economy, depending on the sector, work force, and number of Americans affected.  Moving an HP call center might add $50 mil to our nation's GDP... but if it's 10 guys earning all that money, and 1000 guys being laid off, the adverse effects outweigh the positives.


Slow raises are the answer.  50 cents a year for 5 years, then re-evaluate.  I tell ya, they should pay me for this shit Smiley
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« Reply #22 on: December 24, 2006, 02:19:45 AM »

Yes but they should have started it years ago....No doubt Clinton was trying to do this but the Republican Congress that he was burdined with held him back.If it weren't for them,he would have left an even GREATER legacy than he did...if THAT'S even possible. Undecided



















     Grin
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« Reply #23 on: December 24, 2006, 02:20:01 AM »

accounting for inflation, the new min wage probably is not any higher than it was in the 80's
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