Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announces a $15 minimum wage plan. (Steve Ringman / The Seattle Times)
UPDATE, 12:30 p.m., 5/8/14: Five months into the Seattle $15 minimum-wage debate, the potential ripple effects are still being discerned. On Wednesday, nonprofit human-services providers described the complications — and benefits — of a higher wage at a Seattle City Council meeting. Nonprofit leaders lamented the industry’s low pay scale, and praised the potential for a higher wage to lift their own workers out of near-poverty.
But for the nonprofits to pay for higher wages with cuts services, other governments — particularly the state — would have to pay part of bill. Getting a Legislature consumed with boosting education spending to pay for Seattle’s radical wage experiment would be a very hard political “lift,” as they say in Olympia.
To tease out other potential consequences and benefits, join The Seattle Times opinion section next Wednesday, May 14, at noon, for a Google Hangout discussion on the minimum wage. We’ll have a variety of perspectives for a live conversation, hosted by Seattle Times opinion writer Thanh Tan. Join us.
ORIGINAL POST: When Seattle Mayor Ed Murray proudly stated last week that his minimum wage proposal has “no exemptions,” he apparently exempted one big group: other public sector workers.
Murray’s spokesman, Jeff Reading, said the proposed $15 minimum wage legislation being sent to the City Council would exclude other “governmental entities.”