The City of St. Louis released a statement that minimum wage will increase as soon as the Circuit Court lifts its injunction, which could happen as soon as next week. It will be effective immediately thereafter, according to this press release by the City of St. Louis.
“This decision by St. Louis City leaders, and now the Missouri Supreme Court, will lead to job losses for many minimum wage workers in the City of St. Louis,” said Ray McCarty, president and CEO of Associated Industries of Missouri. “The notion that money grows on trees and employers will just pay workers more without impacting other parts of their business is simply ridiculous.”
If employers must pay higher wages to some, they must raise prices, lower other costs, or reduce the total number of minimum wage workers. Also, a cascade effect will happen as workers that are currently paid above minimum wage expect higher wages as the minimum wage increases. The higher local minimum wage, combined with the earnings tax imposed in the City of St. Louis, will encourage more businesses to locate outside the City, making it more difficult to attract and retain employees in businesses in St. Louis City.
“The City has traded short-term gain for some workers for longer term job loss for some of the very workers they have sought to help,” said McCarty. “The Missouri Senate may still enact a bill to prevent this action and we hope they are able to pass HB 1194 and 1193,” said McCarty.