Tax Cuts Offer Opportunity to Raise Minimum Wage

Corporations just got the largest tax cuts in U.S. history. Now they have the money to afford a minimum wage increase.For years, many have argued that raising the minimum wage would be disastrous because companies simply did not have the money to pay higher wages. In 2014, Macy's executive chairman Terry Lundgren said in an interview with Buzzfeed: "You don't want to raise the wage and lay people off in order to be able to afford it."Following the recent tax cuts, a number of major companies from Fifth Third Bancorp to Wells Fargo have announced that they will increase their minimum wage to $15 per hour. The tax cuts, it appears, have solved the impediment standing in the way of the first minimum wage hike in 10 years; companies can now afford a minimum wage increase.The last time we raised the minimum wage was 10 years ago with the Fair Minimum Wage Act, which incrementally raised the minimum wage from $5.85 per hour to $7.25 per hour over a two-year period. I happened to work a near-minimum-wage job, making $8.25 per hour with health benefits, shortly after that increase. I also worked a part-time job as well, making $10 per hour, but with less regular hours and no health benefits.  Continue reading...

Copyright The Dallas Morning News
Contact Us