Illinois State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) sent a letter on April 16th to Governor Pritzker asking for him to support postponing an increase to the minimum wage. According to Rep. Meier, “increasing the minimum wage is a job killer and even worse during a pandemic.”
Rep. Meier’s letter to Governor Pritzker reads as follows:
“Thousands of small businesses are struggling to stay open during the coronavirus pandemic as a result of the ‘stay at home’ order. To provide immediate relief to small businesses, I ask for your help to stop the minimum wage increase scheduled to take effect on July 1.
Over 12,000 restaurants, bars, and hotels in Illinois applied for the Hospitality Emergency Grant Program of which only 700 of these businesses received assistance. This means 11,300 small businesses throughout the state didn’t receive anything, which includes only one business in my district! Now they are told to apply for loans which include a lot of paperwork and restrictions.
If no action is taken, small and large businesses will be hit with two minimum wage hikes this year. Illinois’ minimum wage was already increased from $8.25 per hour to $9.25 per hour on January 1st, with another increase to $10.00 per hour to become law in less than 80 days.
These small business owners are not billionaires, many are already struggling in this state that over regulates and taxes them enough already. They all need help and the fastest way to say Illinois cares about businesses and jobs is to stop this minimum wage increase and reconsider the regionalization that other diverse states do. This is one of many things necessary to help bring Illinois businesses and jobs back.
Help small-town Illinois in trying to survive the coronavirus pandemic by delaying the minimum increase scheduled to take effect on July 1. Otherwise, the death of Main Street rural America will end up being listed in the obituaries.”
Rep. Meier’s official letter to Governor Pritzker can be found here.