Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Business

February 3, 2014

Lifting the minimum wage big deal for small firms

(Continued)

WHERE HE STANDS ON HIGHER MINIMUM WAGE: Opposes.

WHY: “We’ve pretty much cut our expenses to the max. There’s nowhere else to cut except to cut employees or raise prices. If we end up doing this (paying workers more), it puts us at a competitive disadvantage.”

“If we raise our prices, we hope people will pay the higher costs. If they go elsewhere, we’ll end up laying people off.”

WHO: Don Peebles, CEO of Peebles Corp., commercial real estate development company based in New York, has 97 employees, none at minimum wage.

WHERE HE STANDS ON HIGHER MINIMUM WAGE: Supports.

WHY: “You get what you pay for. If you have better paid workers that are working and earning a living wage, they will be more productive. If you have better financial incentives, you’ll have better performance.”

“Unhappy employees, unfocused employees are extremely costly to a business. Any owner facing this kind of situation where they’re going to be paying their workers more, they’ll improve the quality of the product, or deliver it in a more efficient manner. They will make more money doing it.”

WHO: John Arensmeyer, CEO of Small Business Majority, an advocacy group with 25,000 members.

WHERE HE STANDS ON HIGHER MINIMUM WAGE: Supports.

WHY: “We did research last year, a survey. Essentially, two-thirds of the respondents said they were in favor of it. Why? We’re keeping money flowing through the economy. Second, it reduces the burden on taxpayers by having fewer people on public assistance.”

“If people make more money, they’re most likely to be using it at small businesses. It’s all part of an economic cycle. Studies show it would put $22 billion into the economy and would create jobs.”

WHO: Todd McCracken, president of the National Small Business Association, an advocacy group with 65,000 members.

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Poll

Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

I think it’s a good idea to feed all the students free of charge
I think those who can afford it should pay for their school meals
I think all students should be required to pay for their school meals
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