What impact will this have on local businesses?
TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) – A minimum wage of $ 15 could be in Tucson’s future. That’s if voters decide to vote for Proposition 206 in November.
The initiative would distinguish Tucson from much of the state of Arizona.
The money will not hit workers in Tucson immediately, it will happen in four increments, starting with a peak at $ 13 in April and not reaching $ 15 until 2025.
- $ 13.50 by January 1, 2023
- $ 14.25 by January 1, 2024
- $ 15.00 by January 1, 2025
“The fight for 15 is a fight we all have to fight in this world,” said Dwight Metzger, owner of The Gloo Factory.
Metzger supports Tucson’s minimum wage law.
He has owned the union-run printing house for three decades and said that for any small business owner like him doing payroll is a challenge, he knows his employees are his greatest asset.
“I think a workforce that we take care of is going to be more productive, is going to be more loyal and at the end of the day we have to care about people, what good is it if we don’t?” Metzger said.
Across town, Carlos Ruiz, owner of HT metals, said the accessory would be bad for business. So he votes no.
A no vote means Tucson will stay the course with the rest of the state of Arizona, maintaining a minimum wage of $ 12.15 with a gradual increase to reflect the cost of living.
“I think it puts a barrier between my relationship with my employees and myself as a business owner, and it creates an anti-business climate in Tucson in general,” Ruiz said.
Ruiz said he already pays his employees above the minimum wage since it is a skilled workforce.
Where his concern lies is a new labor standards ministry that would oversee worker complaints and employer violations that accompany the proposal.
“Anyone coming to Tucson will look at that and say, ‘Gee, do I really want to move to a city in a jurisdiction that has these kinds of things in place that I will have to manage as a business coming into the city of Tucson. ”Ruiz said.
Voters will be able to make their final decision on Tucson’s minimum wage law on November 2.
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