- "Portland City Club committee calls for higher minimum wage in Portland," Portland Business Journal, Oct. 29, 2015.
- "City Club wants flexible statewide minimum wage," KGW (video), Oct. 29, 2015.
- "Portland 'clearly needs' a higher minimum wage, City Club says," The Oregonian, Oct. 29, 2015.
- "City Club report: Let Portland set its own minimum wage," Portland Tribune, Oct. 30, 2015.
- "City Club says 'Portland needs a higher minimum wage,'" GoLocalPDX, Oct. 31, 2015.
- "Efforts to raise Portland's minimum wage gain momentum," GoLocalPDX, Nov. 11, 2015.
- "Oregon Senate panel holds first hearing on minimum wage increase in 2016," The Oregonian, Nov. 16, 2015.
City Club of Portland members Maria Thi Mai and Ukiah Hawkins testified about the Minimum Wage report before the Oregon Senate Interim Committee on Workforce and General Government on Monday, Nov. 16. Watch their testimony below.
Research committee concludes
“Portland needs a higher minimum wage”
Oregon should restore to all communities the right to set a minimum wage
that meets their economic circumstances.
“The cost of living around Oregon varies significantly, and is much higher in Portland than other parts of the state. For this reason, it does not make sense to insist on a single minimum wage for the entire state,” the Minimum Wage Research Committee concluded in its report.
The committee’s 10 member-volunteers spent six months interviewing 21 witnesses and reviewing relevant data and studies. They concluded that a state law that prohibits communities from increasing their minimum wage above the state rate – called preemption – prevents them from addressing the needs of residents living at the lower end of the economic spectrum.
“More than a third of people working in the Portland area earn less than $15 per hour,” Committee Chair Maria Thi Mai said. “Unlike in the past, those people increasingly are not teenagers but middle-aged workers who do not earn enough to support themselves and their families even if they work full-time or more.”
City Club will devote its Nov. 6 Friday Forum at the Sentinel Hotel to discussing the report and the minimum wage. Those who wish to attend can reserve a seat online at bit.ly/MinWageFF.
After a panel discussion, City Club members will vote whether to adopt the report. Those not in attendance will have an opportunity to vote online.
“With multiple minimum wage proposals in the works for 2016, this City Club report provides the unbiased, nonpartisan analysis that voters and lawmakers need to make informed decisions about whether to support particular measures or bills,” City Club Executive Director Mike Marshall said.
City Club of Portland brings together civic-minded people to make Portland and Oregon better places to live, work and play for everyone. For more information about City Club of Portland, visit www.pdxcityclub.org or call 503-228-7231.
Minimum Wage Committee Members
|Maria Thi Mai, Chair||Ian McDonald, Lead Writer|
|Cezanne Miller, Vice Chair||Matthew Tschabold|
|David Pagano||Claire O'Neill|
|Jack MacNichol||Alex Macfarlan|
|Ukiah Hawkins||Frances Dyke|
|Caroline Harris Crowne, Research Adviser||Patricia Farrell, Advocacy Adviser|
|Rob Brostoff, Research Adviser||
Friday ForumOn Nov. 16, 2015, City Club of Portland's Friday Forum was about the minimum wage and this research report. Watch or listen to the proceedings below. After the panel discussion, the membership debated and voted on the report.