RENDELL, the Minimum Wage - and Citizen Action.

Earlier this week, the Governor's office invited Philadelphia City Council to join the governor at a rally to support raising the state minimum wage - Rendell now wants to move the minimum wage to $6.25 per hour in January, and to $7.15 per hour the following year.

But only one other councilmember attended yesterday - Marion Tasco. Why?! It's not an issue that can be readily identified with Rendell.

Not only did Rendell speak against raising the minimum wage at the state level on the 2002 campaign trail - but he was also a major force, as Mayor, in blocking Angel Ortiz's effort to set a local minimum wage standard in 1998.

City Council finally set a local minimum wage standard this spring for local government, its agencies, and businesses that contract with the city. Our standard is at least 150% of the federal or state minimum wage, whichever is higher. The new standard immediately impacted over a thousand temporary and seasonal workers within local government who are experiencing skyrocketing gas prices in addition to other high costs of living. It also will impact scores of employees of city contractors when those contracts are issued.

Until there is state or federal action, employees covered under local law will receive at least $7.72 per hour.

WHEN the state goes to at least $6.00 per hour for all Pennsylvanians, our covered employees in Philadelphia will go to at least $9.00 per hour.

Yesterday's rally featured speeches from the Governor, a congressman, several state senators, and of course, one city councilman. I talked about how Philadelphia was far behind other major cities in setting its own wage standard - New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, to name a few. Rendell spoke about how Pennsylvania was also far behind other states in raising the minimum wage.

Why?!

The answer is found in "who and what" too many elected officials really represent.

That's all the more reason for citizen action on the most crucial economic issue in the city and state.

Give Pennsylvania minimum wage workers a raise.

I agree with this perspective

I agree with this perspective. Out of curiousity, how do you feel about forcing low-wage employers to cover healthcare costs for their employees? I know the bill was introduced, but I'm not sure where Rendell comes down on it.

Pitting High-Wage Employers Against the

Ben,

how about pitting large high-wage employers against the fiscal conservatives? paying for health insurance for your employees is very costly. Khari Mosley is exploring the idea of approaching billion dollar companies about lobbying for universal healthcare for a citizens. this would cut health insurance out of the package to compensate workers high-wage to low-wage.

Universal Healthcare is the ticket

I agree with dashrinc - even though mandatory healthcare is more of a priority and benefit than slightly raising low wages, it's not realistic in the long run - advocating for universal healthcare may be the strongest position we can take to achieve mandatory healthcare.

Hillary for President ! :)

WWGjr

I've heard about this and thi

I've heard about this and think it's a great idea.

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