Minimum wage hike proposed for ballot

Council President Todd Gloria is proposing an increase in the minimum wage beyond the planned increase by the state of $10.10 an hour by 2016. He says the inequality between high and low wage earners is an acute problem in San Diego due to the high cost of living here.
“Nobody who works full time should have to live in poverty,” stated Gloria, “and yet a quarter, more than a quarter, of full-time workers in San Diego find themselves in that situation.”
And it's not just wages. Gloria cites a report by the center for policy initiatives, a labor-oriented think tank.
“Nearly half of San Diego's private work force lacks access to earned sick leave, which means they're unable to stay home when they are ill.”
The committee room was overflowing with supporters of these two issues.
“When I miss a day of work, than that puts my eating or my being able to pay rent at risk,” one supporter of the initiative said.
“Earning sick days and increasing the minimum wage is the right thing to do in the city of San Diego,” another purported.
“Raising the minimum wage will give families the opportunity to work full-time and meet their needs,” said a third.
Gloria is proposing five days of earned sick leave for all workers. It's a meaningful wage increase tied to the cost of living index, but he didn't put a number on it. Many low-wage workers are in the restaurant industry, represented currently by Chris Duggan.
“We don't know if it's going to be $15, $17, or $11,” said Duggan. “Therefore we are in a neutral position right now.”
The Center on Policy Initiatives study shows a restaurant employee in San Diego needs to make $13.09 an hour to be self-sufficient. Duggan took issue with the study, saying it didn't include tips. He cited a conflicting study by an MIT urban studies researcher.
“Currently, she has a living wage for the city of San Diego at $11.38, so unfortunately that conflicts with what we saw at $13.09.”
Teachers union President Bill Freeman says enough about the studies:
“This does not need to be studied, there's nothing to study, this is a humane thing to do. It's a question whether you want to pay now or pay later.” 
Categories: KUSI