Initiative would bump Eureka minimum ...

Initiative would bump Eureka minimum wage to $10 an hour

There are 138 comments on the Eureka Times Standard story from Mar 20, 2008, titled Initiative would bump Eureka minimum wage to $10 an hour. In it, Eureka Times Standard reports that:

If William Holmes has his way, nobody working in Eureka will make less than $10 an hour.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Eureka Times Standard.

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a person

Napa, CA

#1 Mar 20, 2008
Who, exactly, is this Holmes? This is a populist, fascist method of making the "poor" your subjects. I would say that if the parents are working multiple part-time jobs to stay afloat, then they should not have had children. Do they have cell phones? Landlines, cable/sattelite, a nice car? Those can all be cut and that money saved.

Eureka, CA

#2 Mar 20, 2008
Did Mr. Greenson ask what William Holmes does for a living? If he did, he would have learned that Holmes lives on public assistance, has never held a job here, and probably isn't the city's go-to guy for economic planning.
Snoelf Snuggleson

Amity, OR

#3 Mar 20, 2008
So who is the go to guy for economic planning, Rob Arkley?
Jeff E

Eureka, CA

#4 Mar 20, 2008
An initiative like this will cost Eureka jobs. This is what happens when the economically illiterate trys to tell businesses how to run their business.

I will move my business to Fortuna.

United States

#5 Mar 20, 2008
go ahead, raise the minimum wage.
In order for the employer to be able to pay that minimum wage, employer must raise the cost of his goods.
and so on - just one big circle - it's been going on for years - and, what with the cost of business going up (fees, licenses, taxes, insurances, etc.) the cost of goods has already surpassed the average/low income some years ago.

Instead of continuing this vicious circle - do something about the main/basic part of the problem - government taking more and more of the income - whether it be from the employee (in taxes, ins, fees) or the employer (bigger costs of doing business, in the form of taxes, ins, and fees)

Tacoma, WA

#6 Mar 20, 2008
The fact is and many studies have been done, that in order for a person to comfortable live, and that is paying for their basic needs.. is around 15.00 dollars an hour..

The tax bracket has not been changed since the 50's. Back then a $30,000 salary you were live the high life, and were able to support a family on that. Now a $30,000 dollar job has replaced the 15,000 to $20,000 a year salary.$60,000 back then was outstanding now it is has replaced the $30,000 yr salary. What has not changed is how much the person gets taxed.

Yes something needs to be done.However, it will force business to close, because new ones are not brought in.

Union City, CA

#7 Mar 20, 2008
Good-by small businesses! Hello ghost town Eureka!
Bill Holmes

Arcata, CA

#8 Mar 20, 2008
Hello Anonymous,

I can answer your question. I live on Social Security. I worked all my adult life "above the table" and paid taxes. I do not live on "public assistance."

This is no secret.

As far as businesses closing, when California raised the minimum wage to $8.00 an hour we heard this fear mongering too. I challenge you to find a single McJob that was eliminated, or a single McBusiness that folded due to a higher minimum wage. It didn't happen.

I am willing to discuss this openly with anyone. Contact me:



Have a peaceful day,
Bill Holmes

Arcata, CA

#9 Mar 20, 2008
Jeff E,

Surely you already pay your employees more than $10.00 an hour already don't you?

Have a peaceful day,

Union City, CA

#10 Mar 20, 2008
This pisses me off! Everytime minimum wage goes up, I lose buying power! Everything just gets more expensive. I worked my way up from the bottom starting at minimum wage to where I am today. Minimum wage is just that, a minimum wage an employer has to at least pay. The bottom rung of the ladder, so to speak. The more experience, means better pay. I started my firet job at minimum wage of $1.35 an hour and worked my way up from there. I am so sick of these whiney babies that have got to be making $10.00 an hour with no experience. Get the experience and move up the ladder like everyone else! Then you wouldn't need to raise minimum wage!

Eureka, CA

#11 Mar 20, 2008
Raising the minimum wage here in Eureka may be good, but you need to have jobs to fill with these wages.

You already have the economy going down-hill as it is and we want to place more of a burden on the local small businesses struggling? Makes no sense to me.

As stated in the article, no one can say what the result of this may cause. Will the increase of the minimum wage provide the increase needed to live comfortably here in the Eureka? Or, could it make it more difficult to get assistance when needed for health care?

Will it bring in more taxes for local government services, or take them away because off the lack of jobs? Will this create a town of "speciality shops" only for the outside consumer, or close the current business growth to just a minimum?

There are too many questions, and if you are following activities that are held locally on an annual basis, you are seeing costs are going up and there is less to do to draw outside money. This initiative will only make it more difficult to create more to do and draw the outside dollar to our area.

I actually feel that local businesses need to increase their minimum wages to their employees, but when it is earned, not because of some forced initiative.

Oakland, CA

#12 Mar 20, 2008
When I started working years ago, minimum wage was a starting point. There was an incentive for me better my job skills or get educated to rise above the level of minimum wage. What do you tell a person who's worked hard, getting measely raises to get to $10 an hour? Sorry hard working person, we're going to take away all the buying power you've "earned" so we can make things fair for those that didn't want to work hard? So what if one has to work two jobs to make ends meet. This is America. As Americans we have a right to do that or not to do that based on the life we want for ourselves. It's not government's responsibility to elevate one's standard of living.
Bill Holmes

Arcata, CA

#13 Mar 20, 2008
Eureka businesses have received millions of dollars in direct state subsidies over the last several years through the Enterprise Zone Employee Voucher program. I don't recall any of these business people "whining" about this "public assistance."

Why is it ok for businesses to take welfare but not ok for working people to make a living?

Have a peaceful day,
Minimum Wage

Seaside, CA

#14 Mar 20, 2008
I dont see the benefit of raising the minimum wage. Perhaps you have noticed that along with the last minimum wage you saw an increase in prices for goods.

No business owner is willing to lose thier comfortable profit margin, thus everything goes up. If the wage is increased in just Eureka, I think it will force folks in arcata and fortuna to pay a higher amount for goods/services.

Nice Idea, but kinda dumb.
Bill Holmes

Arcata, CA

#15 Mar 20, 2008

It is of course the people who are making minimum wage that see the benefit of $80.00 per week more in their paycheck. If you "don't see the benefit" then you are most likely not a person who is making minimum wage.

When San Francisco raised their minimum wage to $9.37 an hour prices in general did indeed go up- by an estimated 2%, well worth the huge help it gives to the working poor.

Have a peaceful day,

Lubbock, TX

#16 Mar 20, 2008
Bill Holmes wrote:
Surely you already pay your employees more than $10.00 an hour already don't you?
This show quite limited thinking, Bill. The minimum wage is a foundation that wages are based on. When the minimum wage increases, it is appropriate to raise ALL employees wages accordingly. Example: During the last minimum wage increase of .50c, my employees who make 10.25 then got a raise to 10.75.

While I support increasing the wage base up to a living wage, I will not support your bill for three reasons.

1st: An appropriate method to increase the wage is small, gradual steps which would allow businesses to absorb and adapt to the costs. Most minimum wage paying businesses have minimum wage customers so the effect is a net wash. But this takes time to adjust which a mandated 2.00 jump won't allow a small business, operating month to month, to accomidate.

2nd: The effected area is too small. A statewide raise, or perhaps a countywide raise, would allow for the economy to adjust more smoothly and with less losses to the specific area of Eureka. In this case, many businesses will simply move the short distance out of town which will be a net loss to Eureka and it's workforce.

3rd: Many businesses, such as mine, do much of thier business outside of the area. Therefor a raise of this sort will do little to help them maintain viability while costing them dearly. Ten employees working full time would equate to $800 a week plus employee costs such as workers comp and payroll taxes. There are many small business owners who do not even take home $800 a week, so this will put them out of business.

In summary, while you sentiment is correct, your methodology is flawed. Raising the minimum wage is a balance between bringing a better standard of living while maintaining a viable business community. When done correctly it benefits both employees and business owners. You proposal only addresses one segment of the equation. This could be disastrous to our local economy resulting in less jobs overall.
George Shieman

United States

#17 Mar 20, 2008
San Francisco and 50 other cities have similar laws in effect.

The key, for Chris Kerrigan, would be to pursue legislation for
a "living wage" standard that would require all businesses that
"contract" with the city of Eureka to pay a set wage.

The initiative process is probably the only way to have a "living wage"
set for ALL people who work within the city. There is absolutely no
way that the City Council will do it for Eureka wage earners.

San Francisco voters knew that wage earners were underpaid for the
work that they do. Voters also knew that underpaid workers are a
significant burden on taxpayers, needing more health and social
services to be paid by the public.

So, San Francisco voted in a living wage...and it is reviewed every
year and raises automatically according to a specified economic
statistical indicator. I believe the wage is approx.$9.54

But, the living wage for businesses that win contracts to do business
directly with the city and county of SF pay a higher wage...
...or they are not eligible to win city contracts. That wage is over

Chris Kerrigan went to Illinois to work on the John Edwards' campaign.
He must know that Edwards' parents were union millworkers. That
Edwards has done a national tour with Danny Glover to promote
a living wage for restaurant & hotel workers. He also must know that
shifting the decision from the voters to the elected council will spell
defeat for any progress in obtaining a living wage for Eureka workers.

Unfortunately, many of our elected officials believe that they know
more than their constituents, and they will claim to make decisions
in the "best interests" of the people...EVEN if their decision conflicts
with the "will" of the people. That is rather condescending, and
often the voters will give the politician a little shove out the door.

That said, generally speaking I have enjoyed watching Kerrigan's
progress and service as an employee of the people of Eureka.

Good morning from a Eurekan living in political paradise.
George Shieman

United States

#18 Mar 20, 2008
Fing rednecks complain about out of work plazoids and then complain about giving them an actual living wage.


Since: Mar 08

Arcata, CA

#19 Mar 20, 2008
Hello Jason,

The ordinance has a step up exemption for small businesses (under 10 employees) and non-profits, a two year period of adjustment: First year,$9.00, second year,$9.50.

This is all in the proposed ordinance. It would be worthwhile reading it. The full text is on the website.



Have a peaceful day,

San Francisco, CA

#20 Mar 20, 2008
"1st: An appropriate method to increase the wage is small, gradual steps which would allow businesses to absorb and adapt to the costs. Most minimum wage paying businesses have minimum wage customers so the effect is a net wash. But this takes time to adjust which a mandated 2.00 jump won't allow a small business, operating month to month, to accomidate."

Small businesses with 8 or fewer employees would be exempt for 2 years,with a gradual increase occurring up to that point.I believe with the inception of the ordinance,they'd be required to pay $9.00 an hour.

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