High pay, high prices, fewer jobs
by Hannah Harris
Posted 7/30/19, 10:52 am
Emeryville, Calif., the Bay Area home of Pixar Animation Studios, has the highest minimum wage in the nation: $16.30 an hour. Some small businesses are laying off employees and raising prices. Erik Hansen, owner of Moomie’s, a local cafe, told The Wall Street Journal, “I don’t think the people in Emeryville will feel like paying the highest prices in the country.” The E’ville Eye Community News, a local citizen-journalist local news platform, noted, “Nearly all the new businesses that have opened have embraced the counter service model that requires fewer employees.”
What about the rest of the country? On July 18, House Democrats approved legislation to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 (set in 2009) to $15 an hour in 2021. The Republican-led Senate isn’t likely to consider the bill. The Congressional Budget Office predicted a $15 federal minimum wage would lift 1.3 million Americans out of poverty but also result in about 1.3 million lost jobs.
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Hannah is a WORLD reporter based in Asheville, N.C.