$15 minimum wage compromise is still wrong (Opinion)
No word yet from Gov. Murphy's office on what his opinion on this is, but a new piece of legislation which would eventually bring the minimum wage in New Jersey to $15 per hour has been formally introduced in the Assembly. It's a bit of a compromise and I wonder if the give and take is enough to get a lot of naysayers on board. I still say no. Here are some details.
It would gradually raise the state minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024. Figure it's going to $8.85 in January of 2019 as is. So that's more than a dollar per year increase every year until 2024. However many groups are put in a set aside category that will be given all the way until 2029 to reach that same $15 requirement. Those are teenagers under 18 years of age, seasonal workers, agricultural workers and also any businesses with fewer than 10 employees.
Starting in 2020 the legislation also allows employers a "training wage"; paying workers at least 90% of the minimum wage for up to 80 hours.
Is that enough of a change from what the governor wants, which is a $15 minimum wage for all as soon as possible, to bring people on board who have been opposed to this? It certainly would make it easier for small business owners by buying them a full decade. I for one am still opposed to this. Those who now make $13 and $14 an hour and have been on their jobs for several years are certainly going to bristle entry level inexperienced workers coming in at their same pay level and will demand more. Those who make $10 above minimum wage now ($18.60 at present) will surely demand to remain $10 above the new minimum wage ($25.00 eventually). When this happens, how do businesses not pass along the hit they will take to consumers? Higher priced goods and services will make New Jersey that much more expensive to live, which over time will come to mean a $15 minimum wage will put those workers right back where they started from.
What's your take on the just introduced minimum wage bill? Can Jersey afford this? Take our poll below.
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