Minimum wage supporters urge veterans not to sign petition

San Diego (KUSI) – California law allows anyone unhappy with a newly passed law to try and over-turn it with a referendum.

There is nothing unusual about a referendum, but it is unusual when opponents plead with voters not to get involved as is the case with the battle over San Diego’s minimum wage.

A referendum battle does not begin until after enough signatures are gathered, but this fight began the day after the council overrode the mayor’s veto of the minimum wage ordinance.

Councilman Ed Harris says, “We’re here to ask you do not sign, don’t sign, and that’s why we’re here.”

Council Ed Harris was at the Veterans Museum in Balboa Park with others, to in list veterans, and others to join the effort at preventing this from going to the voters.

“I employ everyone not to sign this petition because it will take the sick leave and the San Diego raise,” says former Marine Joe Rider.

Nathan Fletcher said, “We are asking San Diegans to stand united and say no more divisive elections, no more referendums, no more living in the past, lets do the right thing for our veterans. Lets do the right thing for San Diego.”

The Small Business Coalition is gathering the signatures to oppose the wage increase and some of its members are small business owners.

Proponents of the wage increase continually say the $2.50 increase will lift hundreds of thousands of San Diegans out of poverty.

That begs the question: will increasing the minimum wage from $9 an hour to $11.50 really lift people out of poverty?

“This, may not be where we’d like it, we know $13.09 is where we need to be to really move them to an area out of poverty,” says Harris.

$13.09 an hour was the original wage set by council president Todd Gloria, but that was dropped to $11.50 an hour as a compromise.

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