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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Minimum wage increase from July 1 to impact 12 areas in L.A. city and county

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The minimum wage in Los Angeles and several other local governments is set to increase from July 1.

On July 1, the city of Los Angeles, along with 12 other local governments including Pasadena, West Hollywood, and unincorporated areas, will raise their minimum wages. The increases range from 74 cents to $2.08, with five areas having an hourly wage above $17 from July 1.

In Los Angeles, the hourly minimum wage will increase from $16.04 to $16.78, requiring employers to pay an additional 74 cents per hour. L.A. County will also see a 94-cent increase in its minimum hourly wage from $15.96 to $16.90. The hourly minimum wages for L.A. city and county governments will reportedly be adjusted to reflect the rate of inflation (CPI).

Malibu will also pay $16.90 per hour, up 94 cents from $15.96, while Pasadena will see an increase from $16.11 to $16.93. West Hollywood, which previously had different hourly adjustments based on the number of employees, will remain flat at $19.08 starting July 1. This means that businesses with fewer than 50 employees will pay $2.08 more (up from $17), and those with more than 50 employees ($17.50) will pay $1.58 more.

Hotel workers will also witness an increase in their hourly wage from $18.35 to $19.08. Notably, West Hollywood will have the highest hourly minimum wage among the 12 areas raising their wages on July 1. Northern California’s Emeryville ($18.67), San Francisco, and Berkeley ($18.07 each) will have the next highest hourly rates.

The minimum wage hike by the city and county, combined with the sluggish economy, has posed challenges for Korean-American business owners in L.A. as they struggle to find ways to reduce labor costs. One restaurant owner stated, “Labor, rent, and food ingredient prices have all gone up. The impact of the minimum wage increase will lead to higher costs in the industry, which will eventually result in lower sales.” They also mentioned their family’s decision to rotate serving duties in order to cope with increased costs.

The hotel industry is similarly concerned about labor shortages and rising costs in anticipation of the minimum wage hike. Sean Kim, the general manager of Garden Suite Hotel, expressed, “The increase in the minimum wage will eventually affect the wages of all employees, which is a huge burden on the business.”

Some argue that current salary levels already surpass the new hourly wage, suggesting that the impact may not be significant.

BY EUNYOUNG LEE   [support@koreadaily.com]