Hear David Boze every weekday at 6am on 770 KTTH
David Boze

Oklahoma kills local minimum wage hikes

The debate over minimum wage is getting bigger - or smaller, depending on your outlook.

Host David Boze reported on Tuesday that in Oklahoma, the state government has removed the power of cities and counties from setting the minimum wage, making it an official state duty.

That law - which Republican Gov. Mary Fallin gleefully signed into law - arose after activists in Oklahoma City began a campaign to raise the wage from $7.25 to $10.10 (the latter figure is what President Barack Obama wants as the federal minimum).

Now, Oklahoma City will have to obey state law instead of going rogue, as Seattle and SeaTac have done in this state.

"In Oklahoma, they're taking care of business," Boze said. "The rest of the state reacted and said, 'We need uniformity of wages,.'"

So, could that same kind of law happen in Washington?

"I think Washington state will do the same," Boze said. "I think it's possible that Washington will approach this in a similar fashion - there's no doubt the $15 Now crowd would like to see the whole state reach $15 ... now."

Meanwhile at ground zero, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray has told the committee he formed to come up with a minimum wage plan to 'hurry up' or he'll release his own plan. From The Seattle Times:

"Committee members and other observers at Tuesday's meeting said there are deep divisions over key elements of a minimum-wage proposal, including business' desire that tips and other forms of compensation be counted toward a $15 minimum.

The two sides also are at odds over how long a phase-in would last, and whether different sizes of business should be treated differently.

Murray's office declined to say how the mayor's proposal might deal with those issues if the committee doesn't come to an agreement."

Some on the mayor's panel, Boze said, are pushing for a 10-year phase in of a $15 minimum wage - an idea that $15 Now activists would almost certainly reject.

"That's another way of saying, 'I can't do it, it's too expensive, I'll have to wait for inflation to take care of it.' Then the mayor is threatening to just do it, but he hasn't said what he'll do."

Neal McNamara, Writer, KTTH
Originally from the Northeast, Neal McNamara has worked as a news reporter for more than 10 years at newspapers across the U.S., landing most recently in Seattle.
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
The Little Red Book of Obamunism: Quotations from The One
It's the must-have election resource of 2012! It's a pocket-sized collection that reveals not just what the president says, but what he means!
Buy it now on Amazon.com
Look inside: Read a sample

Kumar Joe, The Singing Crow
Kumar Joe, the Singing Crow is the tale of a little crow who was born with a heart for music, but not a voice for it.
Buy it now on Amazon.com
Look inside: Read a sample

In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.