Letters to the Editor
Minimum wage article points out issues
To the editor:
I am writing in response to the article by Bob Sanders published Feb. 7 in the online addition of New Hampshire Business Review (A version of “Tips at heart of N.H. minimum wage debate” is reprinted in this issue on page 20). He has done an excellent job in presenting the arguments from both side of the debate.
I have a few comments on the arguments made below by the opponents of freezing the tip wages:
“But advocates of the bill don’t buy that argument. First, they say, the amount involved is minuscule compared to the company’s bottom line,” writes Sanders.
He also quotes Martha Yager, economic justice coordinator for the American Friends Service Committee as saying: “To threaten to take the difference out on the people in the back is not appropriate. What happens when your other costs go up, like the cost of energy or beef? You don’t cut benefits, you bump your prices up. They have to figure this out without taking it out of somebody’s hide.”
The opponents in this case fail to acknowledge that in recent years profit margins for business owners have continually shrunk, due to rising energy costs, gas price increases and property tax increases. Gas prices and Interest rate hikes in recent years also have reduced consumers’ discretionary spending budget, resulting in shrinking revenue for the restaurateur. With increasing competition, it is very hard to pass the costs to our customers without losing market share.
Since when did is the government in the business of watching a business owner’s “bottom line” in a free-market economy such as ours? If that’s the case, recent oil company profits should be at the top of the priority list before the hospitality industry, which may not even make it to the top 500 priorities on the list.
Thank you very much for your article on this matter.