Thursday, November 29, 2007


'Human Face' of Wage Hike Impact Sought:
Saipan Chamber of Commerce president Juan T. Guerrero urged fellow businessmen yesterday to let the federal government know how the minimum wage hike has affected them. The U.S. Department of Labor wants to put a human face on the impact of the wage increase, Guerrero said.
James Carter of the U.S. Labor Department, reportedly asked whether there had been business closures, employee work hour reductions, or company downsizing that result from the 50-cent wage hike implemented earlier this year. Guerrero also said Carter would be interested in other effects attributable to the wage hike, such as price increases to customers or reductions in employee benefits. He urged everyone to submit a comment. “I believe that it is important for the federal government to fully understand the effects of its actions on our island economy,” he said.
The Whole Story Here
Well here are my comments:
1. To little to late.
2. Successful businesses weren't affected at all, as they were already paying above the minimum wage.
3. Only businesses exploiting their employees are crying foul.
4. Benefits were reduced to more than offset the wages, so the exploited employees are actually received less than before.
5. Still is not enough to support a 'local' workforce.
6. Should be increased to coincide with the US minimum wages...
7. Or.. Should be linked directly to equal gas prices.
8. Caused the local government to pass an employee punishment
'labor reform bill'.
9. little to late.
10. As for the faces.. Take pictures on Dec. 7th at the Unity March.
In conclusion..
Any business that can't afford these wages are here only to exploit their employees and should not be in business on American soil.
Here is your chance to comment. Place your comments below...


lil_hammerhead said...

You stole my post Glen!!! I actually started one on this and didn't get a chance to finish it. :(

First thing that came to mind when I read this.. gas is four bucks a gallon, and the Chamber is trying to corral the businessfolk into providing anecdotal stories about the pain and suffering the increased minimum wage has caused.

Human face? I ask.. what about the real "human face" of a $3.05 minimum wage when gas is $4.00 a gallon (and probably rising)?

glend558 said...

Great minds run in the same tracks....

SteeleOnSaipan said...

"Any business that can't afford these wages are here only to exploit their employees and should not be in business on American soil."

That is about as good as the situation can be summarized Glen.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

I don't think there is a single business even phased by this first 50c raise with the exception of the garment factories which are dead meat even at 3.05. They can't compete without governmental favoritism in a market place that pays labor 30c to 60c per hour flat. So bye. Most others are already paying more for any employee worth anything.

Anonymous said...

I guess it's unanimous. As a business manager and a member of the Chamber, I say, bring on the rest of the increases! I'm tired of competing with companies that pay peanuts while we try and pay honest wages (and get good local employees to boot)

glend558 said...

I wonder if he is thinking everyone will be crying big tears, wringing their hands and moaning how the .50 cent raise has ruined them? Do you think this is what he is looking for? Won't happen!

lil_hammerhead said...

It sure sounds like that is precisely what he's looking for. He didn't put a call out asking for business owners and management to collect anecdotal stories from their employees and how the meager .50 may have assisted their lives just a little bit. Even if that meant a few hours less work for the same paycheck. A few hours extra with the family for the same amount of money never hurts.

Anonymous said...

As I like to call them...the chamber of "some" commerce, they seem to have a penchant for taking undefendable positions on just about everything lately. The anon. comment about the unlevel playing field is so very very true.

You can carry that thinking over to the businesses that under report and cheat on just about everything, not only employee matters but BGRT, Income tax and so forth. Not fair to those who pay properly.

The concept of voluntary compliance when it comes to taxes and following rules seems to be completely lost on businessmen from most of Asia. Without proper tax audits, the revenues lost to the government is enormous. This is a fact.

Unfortunately, instead of auditing and examining tax returns and businesses, the government chooses to simply raise taxes and fees. So what happens, those of us who pay properly, are edged out of the marketplace because we cannot compete with those that are not affected by tax and fee increases.