The Culver City Council meeting on May 9, 2022 included a discussion of setting a local minimum wage, and resulted in the creation of a sub-committee with Vice Mayor Albert Vera and Council member Yasmine Imani McMorrin to study the topic.
The staff report, presented by Assistant City Manager Onyx Jones, noted that while the federal minimum wage is still $7.25 an hour, the state minimum is $15.00 per hour. “Individual cities, especially in areas with higher costs of living, have adopted local ordinances that establish a minimum wage greater than what has been established by the legislature.” As one example, West Hollywood now has the highest minimum wage requirement in California, with a current base of $16 per hour for small businesses and $16.50 for larger businesses.
The subcommittee is tasked with considering many factors; Would non-profits also be included in the requirement? Would the wage be set or adjusted on an annual basis? How would the city enforce the ordinance?
Jones also noted that “Community engagement was a huge part of the process [for the City of Los Angeles.] They addressed stakeholder groups such as workers, employers, advocacy groups and community members. All the cites in the area such as Santa Monica, West Hollywood and LA all had economic studies done by consultants, and used a peer review of those studies [to assess results.] Each of the cites that took this on took several years to get from start to finish.”
A statement released today from the Culver City Chamber of Commerce noted that “A higher minimum is an additional burden on businesses still very much struggling through the COVID recovery.”