MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Supporters of a proposed Minneapolis city ordinance to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour got another step closer to a win Wednesday.
The city council voted to pass a version of the ordinance that raises the minimum wage for all workers, including those who are tipped.
There is still one final vote on the measure set to happen Friday.
The issue of tipped workers is a major point of contention among those in the service industry.
One supporter of the current proposed measure said not all tipped employees make a lot of money in tips.
“For every bartender working downtown making hundreds of dollars during a shift there is someone at Denny’s who not making hundreds of dollars in a shift,” Tyler Vasseur said.
However, many in the service industry argue that business owners will not be able to afford the pay hike and will end up cutting jobs.
“If there are no jobs to be had, there is no $15 per hour to be made,” Adam Borgen said. “I want them to include my tips, which are taxable by the IRS, toward that $15 per hour.”
Council member Jacob Frey, who is running for mayor, proposed giving small businesses with less than 100 employees seven years instead of five years to implement the change.
“The intention is to have a slightly different treatment for large corporations than small businesses,” Frey said.
The measure passed, but outside the chamber, it appeared to offer little comfort to either side of the debate.
“People making $15 right now in 2017 still don’t make enough to afford an average one-bedroom apartment in Minneapolis, even if they are working full time,” Vasseur said.
The council could still vote to make some amendments to the proposed city ordinance on Friday before the final vote.