Kay says minimum wage hike will hurt Metro East
Dwight Kay is convinced nothing good can come from what he says was Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Democratic lawmakers ramming the new $15 per hour minimum wage bill through the legislature.
With Pritzker’s signature, Senate Bill 081 officially became law on Feb. 19. The measure mandates that pay increases for minimum wage workers come in increments, with the rate jumping to $9.25 an hour on Jan. 1, 2020, and to $10 an hour on July 1. After that, annual hikes of $1 will come up until 2025.
Kay, a former state representative who unsuccessfully ran as a Republican in the 112th District in November, said he doesn’t see any area of the state being anymore adversely impacted by the new law than the Metro East area.
“In real simple terms, this will be a total disaster for this area and, on the whole, is just a wrong-headed act for the new governor to be taking as his first official action,” Kay told the Metro East Sun. “It helps no one in creating jobs and any businesses that may have been looking at Illinois as a potential destination place will completely rule it out as an option.”
In fact, he said, "“There are only two ways this can impact businesses across this state,” Kay said. “For many small business owners, it will be the end because they can’t afford it, and in the case of big business owners, they won’t care too because it cuts into the little profits they have too much. So it may also be the end for them in Illinois. I don’t see how anyone can consider this a win for the state.”
Kay said even the rationale offered up by Democrats for pushing the bill strikes him as misguided.
“The minimum wage was meant to help people get to the place where they can earn more,” he said. “With this bill, we’re not incentivizing people to do the things they need to in order to do better for themselves or to earn more money.”