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Minimum Wage Increase Not Good For All

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MEDFORD, Ore. — Beginning in a few days, almost 100,000 Oregonians will see their pay increase.  In 2014, minimum wage will jump 15 cents, from $8.95 to $9.10, making it the second highest minimum wage in the country, next to Washington.

Tammy Laird is a cashier at Food 4 Less, and even though she’s worked her way up and no longer makes minimum wage, she used to years ago.  She knows the 15 cent jump will make a big difference when it comes to the lives of others.

“A lot of people have lost their jobs in this area, and they are starting all over at a minimum wage job, and this is perfect, and a lot of those people have families, grand kids, and they need all the money they can get,” said Laird.

However, some people said the increased minimum wage still isn’t enough.

“It’s still poverty level. Nobody can live on that kind of money… nobody,” said Oregonian Janice Reed.

The minimum wage jump will also impact small businesses, like Abby’s Pizza.   Abby’s said the higher wages will have a negative effect on their business.

“The consumer is not actually making more money, they are just paying more for what they are getting,” said Abby’s general manager, Shelley Hale.

Abby’s Pizza said they will have to increase prices and cut hours from their employees’ work schedules, big changes for a small increase.

“The prices are going to be comparative to the wages that they are getting, said Hale. “If it goes up one percent the food is going to go up one percent. Everything you buy is going to go up the same percentage as the increase in your minimum wage so it’s a no win situation.”

State officials said the minimum wage boost will help the state’s economy grow.   The state Bureau of Labor and Industries said the increase will generate nearly $20 million in new economic activity for the state in 2014.

6 comments

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  1. me says:

    I want to remind everyone that when the minimum wage was instituted, it WAS in fact set at a level that was a “living wage”… and is now at or near the lowest it has ever been in real dollars.

    So all that the American worker is asking for is that the minimum wage be “re-balanced” so that it is at a level that is at least a little closer to what it was originally designed for.

  2. rick says:

    at 20 +dollers an hour its hard….what are the rich owners of these places thinking screw every one over including the customer..i cant afford it but i do leave as much of a tip as i can,because there jack off boss wont pay them squat!

  3. Ja M says:

    With what Abby’s charges for a pizza, if they can’t pay their employees at least the new minimum wage and/or have to increase their already quite high prices, then they’re doing it wrong and should probably hang it up. It’s a shame. Abby’s is an institution here….I grew up watching the pizza dough being rolled out in the kitchen through the big windows all around. Lots of good memories of time with friends and family as a child.

  4. Pogo says:

    We taxpayers must subsidize the workers with food stamps and public assistance because Abby’s Pizza doesn’t pay enough to live. I don’t mind spending a few bucks more for pizza knowing the workers can pay their bills so PLEASE don’t punish them by cutting their hours.

  5. miraclepieco says:

    Let’s make minimum wage $80 per hour. That way no one will have to go to college, trade school, or do anything to improve their skills.

  6. Heather says:

    I love how just because Abby’s is the one that gave comments to the news, everyone is against them. We all know that most small businesses in Oregon WILL raise prices to pay for the higher wages. I expect to pay more for things I want to accommodate these wage increases. If small business owners did not raise prices and wages keep going up they would go out of business or have no workers. Just my opinion.

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