Minimum wage proposal up for Chicago debate

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Four hundred thousand people in Illinois make minimum wage, or $17,000 a year.

If a city council proposal passes, they'll make nearly $21,000 by June.

The Raise Chicago Coalition, which has been fighting for years to raise the minimum wage, says this increase is long overdue.

“We need to face the fact that today's minimum wage leaves working people with children in poverty,” said Alejandro Sanchez, member of the Brighton Park neighborhood council.

Under Mayor Emanuel's proposal, the city's minimum wage would go up to $10 by June 2015 and $13 by 2019.

The mayor is pushing this ordinance before the state takes up the measure before the fall veto session.

The proposal would increase the minimum wage 80 cents a year over three years, topping out at $10.65.

Some business leaders and aldermen support the state's gradual plan, calling it more reasonable. They say the mayor's plan would increase business labor costs sharply by 57 percent.

44th Ward Alderman Tom Tunney's family has owned Ann Sather restaurants for 35 years. Tunney says he’s not opposed to a wage increase, just not all at once.

“Our jobs were never meant to support a family of four.  We don't look at minimum wage.  We look at entry level and see how many people we can move into the work force,” Tunney said.

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  • Atta Boy Rahm

    Get it done Rahm.
    About time people make a little more instead of the owners or corporate type all whom cry cry I or we might loose our business or bouses.
    That is BS, anyone with a brain knows at the end of the day the customer pays more. And guess what you and I mean all of you business owners/corporate types raise your rates every year regardless. So cry old man river to your financial advisor or stock broker, accountant save the BS for some one else.

  • JD

    I’m on Disability! Where is my raise?? I get less than $14 k a year! oh SURE end of December Social Insecurity COLA will be a whopping 1.7%! That means about $20 a month, THEN Link will be cut to equal that adjustment! These people need to realize that it will mean less hiring, hours cut. I live very well and within my means with what I have! Working at Mcdonalds is not meant to be a career choice! Raumner , Rahm will join togtether to pu8sh this through it will only lead to more unemployment!