We all want to make more money. There is no doubt that if asked, everyone would say that they could use a raise. We also without exception wish that the lower income jobs paid more. But rarely do we look at what wage increases do to businesses.
The Alabama legislature has done just that in the case of a newly passed Birmingham law. And their action has caused some concern.
A bill to block Alabama cities from setting their own minimum wages is now law. Gov. Robert Bentley has signed the bill, his office said.
The Alabama Senate passed the bill today by a vote of 23-11.
The Birmingham City Council voted Tuesday to raise the minimum to $10.10 an hour moving the effective date up from an ordinance passed earlier.
For the City of Birmingham, the idea was to increase the wage to improve the standard of living for those working for minimum wages. This Minimum wage is the federal level of $7.25 per hour.
“When you lift a person on the bottom, everybody above them is lifted up,” Sen. Rodger Smitherman, D-Birmingham said.
Unfortunately, this is not how things work. Rather, according to Fox News, the most likely result would have been a higher cost for products and services and the loss of jobs in Birmingham. The reason for this is the fact that this extra money would have to come from somewhere.
And just like with taxes, the employer is not likely to pay the difference.
Besides this, we have to understand that most of these lower income workers are high school and college kids. They are working these jobs until they leave school. These jobs are not careers and are not used to support families.
Most likely these politicians know this and are using this sob story to advance their agenda. And they have not given up this fight.
Alabama Democrats have said the federal minimum wage is too low for the working poor with families to survive on.
“Somebody has to recognize that we have a working-poor class of people that are not just in Birmingham,” state senator Linda Coleman-Madison, D-Birmingham, said. She added that she is sponsoring a new bill that will make the minimum wage in all of Alabama $10.10.
With the vast majority of Republicans in the legislature, this is unlikely to gain any real following.