LA: New Facility at Hotels: a Much Higher Minimum Wage

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9 months into minimum wage hike at some of the Los Angeles hotels, city leaders & other supporters of move are claiming victory, saying that the doomsday forecasts from the hoteliers have proven groundless.

Restricted to about fifteen of city’s largest non-union hotels & accounting for over a 5th of all its hotel rooms, the rise was aimed at a segment of service economy that the city leaders saw as the best equipped to absorb extra cost.

The Hoteliers say that the full data aren’t yet in & some layoffs have taken place, but the champions of the raise state that the naysayers’ apprehensions appear to have been overblown.

“There haven’t been the wholesale layoffs or the cutbacks that we’re told would occur,” the Los Angeles City Councilman Curren Price said

The pay increase for a small slice of industry gives an early if partial glimpse into drive for a 15 dollar minimum wage, gathering the pace in states from NY to West Coast. The federal minimum wage has been stuck at 7.25 dollars per hour since 2009.

The California legislature & Gov. Jerry Brown permitted a phased statewide raise to 15 dollars, ultimately disturbing 5.6 million workers.

Pushing the wages to just over 15 dollars from 9 dollars an hour for an expected 3,000 hotel workers began last summer as the 1st phase of hike for 2nd largest United States’ city, that is largely run by the Democrats. It affects about 8 thousand rooms, or half of the LA’s large-hotel room inventory.

The Hotel operators warned that the hike would force them to cut services & staff, put the brakes on the new hotel projects & would drive away the customers.

Julie Robey, a general manager at Holiday Inn LA gateaway, said that because of rise she had to lay off 7 employees, cutting her staff to 95 full & part-time workers.

Robert Amano, executive director of the Hotel Association of Los Angeles had warned that the smaller hotels that don’t have same profit cushion, could face even bigger challenges when they’ve to implement the rise in the minimum wage this summer.

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