Monday is Maine Minimum Wage Day in Augusta

The signs are now ubiquitous. But in the ‘words’ of Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi, “These aren’t the jobs you are looking for.”

These jobs are essential but come with this caveat, the more people that can/will do a job, the less that job is worth. In other word, more often than not, these jobs pay lower wages, all the way down to federal, state & local minimum wage. Not only that, to avoid ACA penalty expenses, the permitted hours worked is capped at less than thirty hours which means they will fall far short of the full-time equivalent rate of forty hours per week before transitioning into the money making payment of OverTime.  Which leads to citizens having to cobble together several jobs to make ends meet.

Minimum wage is only one part of the solution. Low unemployment will drive wages upward. There is also the social pressure to pay living wages v minimum wages.  A better answer is to create value added jobs that support this label.

Now the problem becomes global competition. This results in a downward compresses wages.

Technological efficiencies are also eliminating Lowe playing jobs. On a recent trip, there were only two clerks at the rental car counter. Off to the side were a half-dozen customer service kiosks with computer screens & telephone handsets. While standing in Aizona, I talked with a customer service rep in Oklahoma. The only human briefly directly interfaced with was the gal at the security gate while exiting the garage. All were courtesy, but there used to be several others more employed in the process.

It’s not really an officially declared minimum wage day in Augusta. That tongue & cheek declaration was made by me.

But it certainly seems like it is. The LCRED legislative committee is holding a three-hour public hearing on Monday, March 21, 2015. @ 9:30. A plethora of minimum wage related initiatives have been presented for consideration. I sense that three hours is not long enough & nor is the room going to be big enough.

An Act To Increase the Minimum Wage
HP0046, LD 52An Act To Adjust Maine’s Minimum Wage
HP0066, LD 72An Act To Increase the Minimum Wage
SP0025, LD 77An Act To Raise the Minimum Wage
HP0075, LD 92An Act To Increase the Minimum Wage to $8.00 per Hour
HP0326, LD 487An Act To Provide for an Increase in the Minimum Wage
HP0577, LD 843An Act To Raise the Minimum Wage and Index It to the National Average Wage
SP0269, LD 739Resolve, To Establish a Working Group To Evaluate the Benefits and Detriments of Increasing the Minimum Wage










FMI, please review the link provided. There is some copy/paste corruption.

Stay Tuned.


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