Board chairman, Ben Rogers, says they will study a possible increase carefully and methodically.
“This isn’t anything that we want to rush. We want to convene business leaders, small business owners, non-profit groups, potentially, even having people who make minimum wage,” Rogers says.
Rogers isn’t predicting consensus — but expects a recommendation to the Supervisors by this summer. He says they want to do this now instead of waiting for something to happen in the Iowa Legislature.
“To wait for the state, may mean that no action is taken this year, or they may take action that is less than what is being proposed in Linn County,” Rogers says. “So, to wait for the legislature would mean that we would put off for possibly a number of years this issue. So, we’re taking it on now and perhaps to positively influence the conversation at the state house to take action on it.”
He says they expect to have a recommendation by summer. “Because at that time, the legislature will have adjourned. We will know the impact of any action or inaction by the state, and we can continue to move forward,” Rogers says. Linn County that includes Cedar Rapids — Iowa’s second largest city.
Neighboring Johnson County adopted a resolution last fall that will incrementally hike the minimum wage to an eventual $10.10-an-hour by 2017.
Thanks to Dean Borg, Iowa Public Radio