Eastpointe "Living Wage" Ordinance to Face Voters
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Diane Barnes
"Now the taxpayers will decide
how to spend their money," said
Diane Barnes who organized a petition
drive to force the Eastpointe City Council to put the "Living Wage" ordinance
it passed unanimously last month on the ballot this fall.
signatures of more than the minimum 286 registered voters needed to challenge
the city council's action were certified by the city clerk last Wednesday. The
council must now reconsider the "Living Wage" ordinance at its next meeting on
May 15. At that time they must either rescind the ordinance or else schedule a
vote on the next election ballot (either in September if the city has a primary
to narrow a field of local candidates for the November election, or in November
if no primary is needed).
The ordinance as passed requires companies
that receive $5000.00 or more in local taxpayer money -- either through
contracts or subsidies -- to pay all of their workers a "Living Wage" of at
least $8.50 per hour or $11.00 per hour for companies that do not provide
"We, the taxpayers, will bear the cost through higher
taxes, loss of city services, or city employee job cuts," Barnes asserted.
She has substantial research and statistical support for her position,
including authoritative studies done by credible organizations such as the
Employment Policies Institute, the Nebraska Center for Policy Research, and
Michigan's own Mackinac Center. All have concluded that "Living Wage"
ordinances cost residents through higher taxes and/or reduced services, cost
all affected employers (including those already paying more than the mandated
minimum) additional administrative costs, and cost young people and the working
poor jobs, for the sake of artificially inflating the wage scales of organized
"We need to have clear answers as to why such a policy is
good for everyone in the community," Barnes concluded, "and not just special