For Which Surprise Does Not Ensue


As I predicted in a previous blog, the bill that would require large companies to pay its workers a living wage in Washington D.C. will be vetoed.

This morning in a letter to City Council Chairman Phil Mendleson, Mayor Vince Gray announced that he is going to veto.

The bill would require retailers with $1 billion in sales or more with 75,000 square feet or larger to pay employees $12.50 an hour in combined wages and benefits with an exception for those that collectively bargain with workers.

If passed, it would have meant that the law would have directly affected Walmart.

Walmart’s grip on local governments is a stranglehold as they’re used to getting their way when it comes to minimum wage legislation. In 2007, Walmart threatened to pull out of Chicago if the city went ahead and passed its living wage bill forcing then mayor Richard M. Daley to veto it.

While Walmart has promised both Chicago and D.C. they will bring more jobs the evidence clearly shows that Walmart destroys as many jobs as it creates and fails to stimulate local business.

Mr. Gray,  I urge you to reconsider. Walmart is costing you more than you can afford. Because they pay so little and skew work hours to the extent that their associates (they’re not considered employees) are forced to go on food stamps and state medical aid which, in turn, comes out of the pockets of the good people of D.C. who are already stretched to the breaking point.

Force Walmart to do the right thing and if they leave, so be it. You’ll see a boom in local businesses in the community – and that will stimulate the local economy.

Meanwhile, Mendelson said Wednesday that he plans to hold a vote to override Gray’s veto next Tuesday. Such a vote would require approval of nine of the council’s 13 members. It previously passed 8-5, and no one has said yet that they will change their vote.

Lets hope one person on the council has a change of heart.


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