Monday, July 11, 2016

Alameda may soon begin conversation of raising its minimum wage

Alameda Mayor Trish Spencer may kick start the
minimum wage conversation on the island.
ALAMEDA CITY COUNCIL | Oakland and Emeryville have moved to raise its citywide minimum wage in recent years. In addition, increases are expected soon for low-wage earners in Berkeley and San Leandro. Next up: Alameda?

Mayor Trish Spencer is asking the City Council to consider directing city staff to begin an analysis for raising the minimum wage in Alameda.

If the council referral scheduled for the July 19 regular session is taken up, the discussion would likely not begin until September at the earliest.

"Other cities in the Bay Area have enacted local minimum wage increases," according to the referral. "Staff could identify possible parameters of its application, and what other cities in California have done."

Alameda does not currently have a citywide minimum wage. Like other cities, it relies on the state's requirement, which is set to rise to $10 starting next January and increase a dollar per year to $15 by 2022.

Oakland raised its minimum wage to $12.25 by ballot initiative in 2014 and Berkeley has its own measure coming before voters in November. Emeryville's increase, however, is the most progressive, topping out at around $16 an hour for small business employees by 2020.

San Leandro's minimum wage proposal is designed similar to the state, but arrives at $15 an hour 18 months earlier in July 2020. The San Leandro City Council's proposal, however, will not be finalized until September after a substitute motion carved out an extra year for small business to comply with the wage bump.