An initiative, pushed by $15Now! activists, to raise the minimum in Tacoma to $15 per hour has qualified for the November ballot.
Getting an initiative on the ballot requires 3,160 valid signatures, $15 minimum wage activists managed a tight margin of 3,231 signatures. A total of 2,304 signatures were “declared invalid for a variety of reasons.” The Seattle Times,
“Under the city charter, the Tacoma City Council can approve Proposition 1 as written or forward it to voters. The council cannot modify the proposal.
“The council has convened a task force to develop an alternative measure that could also appear on the ballot…
“[A $15Now! leader] wouldn’t rule out the 15 Now Tacoma group withdrawing its measure if the task force comes up with an acceptable proposal.”
If Tacoma voters approve the measure, businesses that gross more than $300,000 per year would have to begin paying a $15 minimum wage immediately. That means absolutely no phase-in period. Additionally, there are no exceptions based on a business’s number of employees.
Last month, Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland was prompted by the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber to create a city task force for the purpose of developing a counterproposal to the 15Now! ballot measure. Strickland and Tacoma City Council members picked 17 people for the task force. They plan to wrap up their proposal by June 30, and present it to the City Council.