$15 Federal Minimum Wage Will ‘Stick’ in COVID Relief, Says Legislator
A Seattle area Congressional Rep believes a $15 minimum wage proposal will stick as part of a COVID-19 relief package being debated in Washington D.C.
MyNorthwest.Com reports Rep Pramilla Jayapal (D-7th Congressional District) believes it will go through. She told MyNorthwest "I think it's going to be included."
The plan is expected to make through the House, but could find opposition, or struggle in the Senate. Even some Senate Democratic leaders have said they will NOT support a Federal $15 minimum wage, especially during COVID-19 pandemic recovery.
“It is good for communities and it’s good for businesses. I know because we were the first major city in Seattle to raise the minimum wage to 15 [dollars an hour]. In 2018 and 2019, Forbes ranked us the best place in the country for businesses and careers.”
However, her "logic" defies numerous reports from the Congressional Budget Office. Even the Washington Post has admitted such a raise would ultimately result in as many as 1.4 million lost jobs by 2025--the first year it would go into effect. There would be a series of raises between now and then if it were to pass.
Much of the positive news in Forbes she referenced was higher paying tech and trained careers, not minimum wage entry level jobs. The Forbes report also came a few years before rising taxes, homeless and crime issues and CHAZ-CHOP made Seattle an undesirable place to do business.
Other national sources including Reason.com also report the same information. The CBO says $15 wages would lift about 900,000 workers to a higher level, some out of poverty. But that would be offset by the 1.4 million lost jobs. That's a net loss of 500,000. And this would be in just the first year of the plan. The job losses are expected to grow with each year the wage remains at $15.
MyNorthwest.com says several studies and reports have found that after Seattle wages were raised to $15 this year (After a 7 year sliding increase that began in 2014) businesses responded by reducing staff numbers and hours.
These reductions were seen to increase each year the wage rose closer to $15. Now, in 2021, Seattle busineses are required to pay the full $15.