Broadway businesses to mayor: No $15 minimum wage

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SEATTLE — Several business owners on Capitol Hill have sent a letter to Seattle Mayor Ed Murray voicing their concerns about the idea of raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

They are part of the Broadway Business Owners Association on Capitol Hill. In the letter to the mayor, the group asks the city to exempt small businesses from having to pay $15 an hour if the city ultimately decides to raise the minimum wage.

photo“I don`t want my neighborhood to fall apart, that`s what I’m worried about,” said Nikki Page, the owner of Scream Salon, just off Broadway. She also signed off on the letter to Murray.

The group is made up of owners of clothing stores, salons, and restaurants. The letter says a $15 minimum wage hike would mean a 60% increase in employee wages, and “would create an extreme hardship and, in some cases, closure of small business owners and family-operated businesses whose profit margin, if barely, is in the 2-5% margin range.”

Page added, “The idea of paying that much higher in wages all at once makes your heart skip a beat.”

The mayor has formed a task force to look at how feasible a minimum wage increase would be in Seattle. Kshama Sawant, newly elected to the City Council, has made it her priority to raise the minimum wage in the city to $15 an hour.

“I don`t want to hurt small businesses, but I think we all need to step back and study this issue,” said Murray, who added it’s possible the $15 minimum wage could be phased in and that some small businesses could be exempt.

Supporters of an increased minimum wage argue that it would ultimately be good for those businesses on Broadway because by raising wages, a large population of employees across the city would then be able to shop and eat at those locations.


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  • adam

    Anyone who truly believes that by increasing the minimum they’ll be able to afford more goods has no idea how economics work. The companies will have to raise their prices on goods and services across the board in order to pay the higher wages and/or lay off employees to increase their profits to cover it. You think milk, eggs, cheese, and gas is expensive now wait till the store increases the cost to absorb the increased wages. We all know larger corporations will use it as an excuse to raise prices to cover costs plus more. Not to mention what if your one of the many laid off or your business you work for shuts down. Kinda hard to afford anything if you have no income. How about this idea. Instead of requiring businesses to increase wages we try decreasing some taxes on them so they can afford to pay more. Start by removing the inventory tax. The idea of having to pay taxes on products on your shelves is ridiculous. State lawmakers need to figure out how to bring companies back to Washington with out passing all the breakers given to them onto the shoulders of its residents. Just so you know I do not live or work in Seattle if the minimum wage increases in Seattle it will not directly affect me but the idea of throwing a wrench into the gears as we are finally getting a increase in the economy is stupid. To the people complaining about not making enough I know I heard it from my parents and you may have heard it from yours but try getting a second part time job to make a living. It’s called work for a reason stop being lazy and work for what you want in life.