New Year Brings Higher Wages

By: Cathleen Moxley Email
By: Cathleen Moxley Email

The lowest paid workers in Ohio are in for a nice surprise; they'll be starting the new year with a raise.

However, these increased wages could have a negative effect on small businesses.

Arielle Gabhart, an employee for American Flags and Poles in Marietta, said she loves to shop, and she'll be able to do a lot more shopping when she brings in the new year with a pay raise.

"If you look at it day to day, I'm just part time, so it doesn't seem like a lot, but over two weeks it does add up," Gabhart said.

But when it comes to those scooping out the extra bucks, it's a completely different story.

"I am cutting back on employees because we just really can't afford to have extra people around," Asunta Damron, owner of My Favorite Things, said.

With minimum wage in Ohio rising from $7 an hour to $7.30, shop owners say that's just one more factor that could hurt small businesses.

"Our taxes go up. Our wages increase. Everything increases, but our sales decrease," Damron said.

Something even those benefiting from the raise can understand and sympathize with.

"It's kind of a double edge sword how that's working out, because we get higher pay, but also in turn it's not as good for business," Erica West, an American Flags and Poles employee, said.

"It does put a strain on the store," Gabhart said.

A strain of paying more out, in a time when less cash is coming in.

The minimum wage of servers and others working for tips will rise from $3,50 an hour to $3.65.

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  • by Anonymous on Dec 31, 2008 at 09:04 AM
    I hate the negative overcast that WTAP and business owners put over minimum wage increases. I simply will not patronize businesses that view paying their workers a decent wage as a bad thing. If everyone was paid a living wage, then business's would have a better chance of success. I hope that the public takes note of the local businesses that speak out against the minimum wage increases and choose to spend their money where the employees are treated and paid fairly.
  • by Karl Location: Parkersburg on Dec 31, 2008 at 03:56 AM
    Truth of the matter is simply Profit. Not for you, for the company and the bonuses of management. The workers rake it in and get virtually peanuts for it. There are over 75% more management per industry earning 50% more than a measley worker who does all the work to get the profit in the first place. What would stockholders, regional managers, area mangers, clerical staff and advertising agencies do without the lowly worker? No one cares. You're trapped in a minimum wage job barely keeping your head afloat. You're dependant on that tiny paycheck and if you don't want it, they'll find another peon who will. That's big business and that's the way it is. Minimum wage is not the answer. Greed control is. My family could live comfortably for the rest of our lives for what McDonalds spends on it's advertising budget annually. Government, thanks for trying for us, but we're still going the wrong direction.
  • by Fred Location: North End on Dec 31, 2008 at 03:10 AM
    A minimum wage worker in Ohio working 40 hrs per week will now gross a whopping $15,184 annually, usually while trying to raise children. WTAP, perhaps because of someone's connection with a 'chamber of commerce', seems to be more worried about the poor business owner instead of the average working person. It is a shame that in the richest nation on the planet we have write legislation to force business owners to pay even the most paltry wage, but when you consider that a large segment of this country was built by people forced to work for nothing, its no surprise.
  • by crystal Location: marietta on Dec 30, 2008 at 05:16 PM
    why is it that a pizza delivery person cant get full minimum wage?! this make me outraged!we have to use our own vehicles,pay our own insurance,and we have to pay for our gas!to top it off they charge $2.25 for delivery charge and all we get out of it is a measliy $1.10 not even half! some of the deliveries are as far away as 14 miles. why is we are always forgotten or taken advantage of? yes we do make tips but here in the past year. people are not tipping as well if at all on an average of 15 deliveries we will get stiffed at least half of that time. whats going to happen to us?!
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