Split Decision “Plus” in Mandates Vote!
Split decision “plus” for Wilmette minimum wage/paid sick leave ordinances
“No” to paid sick leave
“Yes” to mandatory minimum wage hike to $13 (by 2020)
“Plus” no CPI increase on top of $13 after 2020
It was so great to see so many New Trier Neighbors supporters at the meeting for the final vote on the Cook County minimum wage/paid leave mandates Tuesday night. More than 80 Wilmette residents and business owners supporting “Opt-Out” were in attendance at the Wilmette Village Hall. There were many more Wilmette supporters of “Opt-out” than “Opt-In.” (This is why the Opt-in folks brought in reinforcements from Evanston, Skokie and elsewhere to even the numbers.) More than 30 well informed, thoughtful Wilmette business owners and residents asked the Board to opt-out. Many business owners told personal stories of how the higher wage, or planning for it in the future, will force them to cut employees and raise prices almost immediately. Far fewer people spoke in favor of opting-in, and their arguments consistently centered only on emotion.
In the end – after 12:30 am! – the Wilmette village trustees rejected the onerous mandated paid sick leave ordinance (by 6 to 1)- phew!- but adopted the equally onerous mandatory minimum wage ordinance (by 5 to 2). The higher minimum wage goes into effect October 1, raising the current minimum wage more than 30 percent overnight, from $8.25 to $11.00. By 2020 it will be $13 an hour. Wilmette government workers/agencies are exempt from the ordinance. Apparently it’s a good idea for businesses, but not the government that passed it.
Here’s the “plus:” The trustees all rejected pegging the mandate to the CPI, or rise in inflation every year after 2020, as the ordinance calls for. So July 1 of 2021 (before the $13 an hour wage is raised by CPI) the ordinance “sunsets,” and Wilmette reverts to whatever the Illinois minimum wage is at that time. If the state does pass a new minimum wage law, it may well end up lower than $13, because downstate constituencies will be especially unable to support a $13 – $15 an hour minimum wage. Disconnecting the new minimum wage from CPI is a win.
Interestingly, several trustees spoke about how difficult the new minimum wage will be for businesses to sustain and shared concerns about same. They dismissed the idea that “70 percent of the people of Wilmette have endorsed this” because they know that’s not true as the “opt-in” folks maintain – and then they voted for the higher mandatory minimum anyway!
But remember, the Village Board can vote to repeal its vote, and opt-out anytime in the future. So please report on businesses impacted by this ordinance: Hiring fewer people? Raising prices? Firing some? Can’t afford to take a chance on inexperienced people or the disabled? Harassed by lawsuits or the enforcement regulations? Choosing Glenview or Northbrook over Wilmette to open a business because of the friendlier business climate there? Whether you are a business owner, or a resident who supports our job creators, Please share your reporting with New Trier Neighbors at:firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks again for all the amazing support, and all the new folks who are now part of the New Trier Neighbors movement to bring free enterprise, common sense, and the Golden Rule back to the North Shore. Onward!
The Year in Review
Thanks to you, New Trier Neighbors is making waves on the North Shore! Since we launched in October 2017 here is what you have made possible:
Sustained issue campaigns to inform and educate on the D39 tax levy process and Wilmette’s mandatory minimum wage/sick leave debates – Wilmette did not pass sick leave and altered the minimum wage policy because of your participation.
An evening with famed CNN economist (and New Trier alum) Stephen Moore, attended by nearly 100.
A screening and discussion of the critically acclaimed “How Jack Became Black” at New Trier High School, promoting diversity in racial discussions and attended by 300.
Three “Mix-n-Mingles” in Winnetka, including hosting our local village trustees and school board members, and speakers including Ted Dabrowski from Wirepoints and Bob Muzikowski of Chicago Hope Academy.
Exposing race-based hiring practices and teacher segregation at a public school in Evanston. Related media coverage appeared in The Wall Street Journal, National Review, and Crain’s Chicago Business.
Holding productive discussions with senior New Trier High school administrators on both exposing students to more intellectual diversity, and listening to students who are concerned about political bias in the classroom.
Publishing weekly newsletters keeping North Shore residents up to date on politicized “gun walkouts,” sexuality surveys in schools, and other “must-know” information that you won’t find anywhere else.
Growing our mailing list of North Shore New Trier Neighbors to over 1000!
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