Small business owners weigh in on bill to raise minimum wage

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April 2, 2015 – By Kendra Nichols

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Representative Patty Kim wants to see some movement on her bill to raise the state minimum wage to $10.10.

“It is not just a democratic movement, red states have also increased the minimum wage and I want Pennsylvania to be the next one,” Kim (D-Dauphin) said. “There are a lot of families that are working their tails off at $7.25 an hour and it’s just not cutting it.”

Kim held a public hearing Thursday at Goodwin Memorial Baptist Church in Harrisburg. One small business owner told lawmakers he already pays most of his employees more than minimum wage.

“Paying them better than the minimum wage was the way to go to create stability for me, confidence for the restaurant as well as the consumer, ” said Richard Infante, owner of “Hungry?We Deliver”.

Opponents of House Bill 250 argue raising the minimum wage would hurt small businesses.

“That is not actually majority opinion in the small business community,” said Alissa Barron-Menza, vice president of Businesses for Fair Minimum Wage. “As folks have a little bit more money to spend, that gets turned right back around into buying needed goods and services they couldn’t afford before.”

Kim’s bill has failed in the past, but this time she has the governor’s support.

“That does not mean its going to be easier, because Governor Wolf supports it, but we are just going to keep pushing it harder and harder up the hill because a million Pennsylvanians would benefit from this increase,” she said.

Twenty-nine states and Washington D.C. have raised the minimum wage above $7.25. Kim’s bill is still in committee.

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