Raising the minimum wage in Ohio has consequences
3 mins read

Raising the minimum wage in Ohio has consequences

Gold Star waitress Amanda Fischer walks through the dining room on her way to a table, Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022, at the Gold Star location on Alexandria Pike in Alexandria, Ky.

Hopefully, Ohioans will see my opponent’s proposal to raise Ohio’s minimum wage at its current level more of the same. Senate Bill 256 is another attempt to serve special interest groups over the will of the people.

The minimum wage in Ohio is $10.45 per hour for non-tipped workers and $5.25 plus tips for tipped workers. Senate Bill 256, sponsored by Senator Louis Blessing, increases the minimum wage by 44% for both groups by 2028. If you support a living wage, this bill looks enticing.

The catch is One Fair Wage’s alternative proposal. This citizen-initiated amendment will be on the ballot in November and provides greater benefits to tipped and non-tipped workers. This is in line with Blessings’ proposed raise for non-tipped workers to $15 two years ahead of Senate Bill 256. For tipped workers, it is a 186% raise to $15 per hour including tips.

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Blessing knows the amendment will almost certainly pass. He says his bill is “a good-faith effort by the General Assembly to say, ‘OK, let’s meet the voters where they are, even if it’s something that wouldn’t otherwise happen…’ “

If voters want this amendment, let’s meet them there. Last-minute attempts to ignore democracy are a political tactic that undermines faith in the system. After Issue 1, the Ohio nuclear bribery scandal, and the zero change in dark money political contributions that produced these results, all Ohioans are not acting in good faith.