LUBBOCK, Texas — Democratic lawmakers introduced “Raise the Wage Act of 2021” Tuesday that would increase the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by the year 2025. Local residents and business owners weighed in on the potential wage increase.
Eddie McBride, President of the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, said implementing a federal wage increase to $15 an hour could hurt employees by cutting hours and even job loss.
“I really think it would be extremely foolish to do it now until we have fully recovered from COVID,” said McBride.
McBride said lawmakers should consider varying factors before setting a new federal wage increase.
“By instituting a federal wage across America is that you don’t take localities, you don’t take small towns, you don’t take all the different regions of the country into consideration, said McBride. “We think that the recalibration should also incorporate some of the states letting the states look at how they would impose an increase in the minimum wage.”
Trasia Johnson said she knows firsthand what it’s like to struggle financially to provide for her family because she was once a single mother. She said she hopes the wage increase does happen to help single parents and hardworking people.
“I’m for it, and I wouldn’t discriminate if they were a warehouse worker or a fast-food worker,” said Johnson, “I believe everybody should get the pay raise.”
Kevin Moore, the owner at Mr. Magic Auto Detailing Service, said he has been preparing for the potential rise in wage for some time by increasing his worker’s pay from $10 an hour to $12 an hour.
“People have to make a living. Everything is up gas is up, utilities are up, and people need to be able to make a comfortable living without having to work two jobs or one job and a part-time,” said Moore.”
Moore said that although he does agree with a wage increase that the increase should not happen abruptly. He said business owners should assess and prepare for a potential increase.
“Be ready for this new transition that’s going to happen because it’s going to happen, so you just have to adjust,” said Moore.