If local social justice warriors have their way, minimum wage workers in Kansas City, Missouri, could see their salaries nearly double by 2022.
On Thursday, the KC City Council chose to comply with a Missouri Supreme Court order and put the question of a $15 minimum wage on the ballot. The current state minimum is $7.70. The city minimum would increase gradually to $15 by 2022 if voters approve the measure.
“Give this relief to our workers and our laborers as soon as possible,” long tome activist the Rev. Sam Mann pleaded with the City Council.
If the results in Seattle are predictive, the workers might be getting more relief than the good reverend anticipates. “Meanwhile,” reports the Washington Post, “although workers were earning more, fewer of them had a job than would have without an increase. Those who did work had fewer hours than they would have without the wage hike.”
The Seattle experiment moved the minimum from $9.96 to $11.14 on its way to $15 an hour. The Post was reporting on a study commissioned by the City of Seattle. In that both the Post and the Seattle economists were pre-disposed to hope for a positive outcome, the report has even more value.
And unlike Kansas City, Seattle does not have an equally viable urban economy hovering right across the street.