Monday, July 03, 2017

Oregon implements different minimum wages for urban, suburban and rural areas

Oregon now has a minimum wage that divides the state into urban, standard, and rural areas, with different minimum wages for each area. The wage increased July 1 for the second year in a row, part of a multi-year plan to gradually bring up the minimum wage to account for cost-of-living increases, Anna Marum reports for Oregon Live.

In the Portland metropolitan area, where living expenses are higher, the wage increased to $11.25. In small city and suburban areas, called "Standard," the wage increased to $10.25. And in rural areas, the wage went up to $10.
Credit: Oregon Live 
Farmers are concerned about the wage increase, saying that they can't raise prices since their crops are part of a slumping global commodities market. Jenny Dresler, director of state public policy for the Oregon Farm Bureau, told Marum in an interview that many farmers have been trying to cut costs since the first minimum wage increase under the tiered system in 2016.

"Some are scaling back employee hours and turning to family to pitch in, or doing more of the work themselves. Others have given up on crops that need to be hand-picked, such as tree fruits and berries, in favor of those that are less labor intensive," Dresler told Marum. "As the cost of production increases and the cost of commodities stays flat, they're going to have to automate more, or they're not going to make it."

No comments: