It looks like raising the minimum wage is going to be a hot topic in 2014. Across the country, Democrats are signaling that they hope to use the issue to take the spotlight away from the troubled rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Therefore, it’s really no surprise that a bill to raise Georgia’s minimum wage is ready to be filed for the 2014 session. From the Douglas County Sentinel:
District 35 Sen. Donzella James (D-Atlanta), who represents a majority of Douglas County, said she’s already drawn up the bill to introduce on Day 1 that would raise Georgia’s minimum wage from its current $5.15 per hour to something higher.
James said the only section not filled out in the bill is the amount. She said while she would like to see it raised to $10 an hour, she’s been talking to people in the business community and knows $10 probably isn’t realistic.
While it’s true that Georgia’s minimum wage is $5.15 per hour, in reality, most workers are paid at least the federal minimum of $7.25 per hour.
Who gets paid the minimum wage? Typically entry-level workers at fast food chains like McDonalds. As the owner-operator of several McDonalds restaurants in the Columbus area, John Pezold is very familiar with minimum wage workers and trying to earn a profit in what is a very low margin business. After President Obama gave a speech promoting an increase in the minimum wage earlier this month, Pezold posted the following picture on Facebook:
Pezold’s point was that if you raise the cost of labor above the value it brings to a business, business owners will find a cheaper substitute, even if it means eliminating jobs.
Oh, and did I mention that Pezold is the gentleman representing House District 133 under the Gold Dome? It will be interesting to see how far Sen. James’ bill gets in the legislature this year.