The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Opinion

January 4, 2014

Illinois would benefit from high-wage jobs

The state of Illinois should not raise the minimum-wage rate above its current level of $8.25 per hour.

The federal government, however, might consider a minimum-wage rate above its current $7.25 per hour.

Those statements are undoubtedly contradictory and the best policy for both state and federal governments is to create opportunities for higher-paying jobs that will move more people above the minimum-wage level.

Illinois has one of the highest minimum-wage rates in the nation and Gov. Pat Quinn has stated frequently that he would like the General Assembly to increase that wage rate, possibly as high as $10 an hour.

But Illinois does not operate in a vacuum. Surrounding states, and most of the rest of the states, have lower minimum wages. That makes Illinois appear to be unfriendly to business. In this case, it’s an accurate sentiment.

Combine the high minimum-wage rate with comparably higher taxes and fees, workers’ compensation costs and more stringent regulation and it’s no wonder that the state has one of the worst unemployment rates in the nation. It’s pretty clear that most businesses don’t want to expand in Illinois and many businesses have taken their operations, and their employees, elsewhere. State policies have had an impact on the state’s employment picture.

Those arguing that the federal minimum-wage rate of $7.25 is too low have some credibility. The current rate has been in effect for more than five years and it may be time to consider an increase.

Economists have argued about the impact of the minimum wage since it was instituted in the 1930s. One school of thought says increases in the minimum wage cause an increase in costs that actually results in a decrease in employment. Another school of thought believes that an increase in the minimum wage results in additional buying power by individuals. Those individuals spend more of their money, thus giving the economy a boost.

Text Only
Opinion
  • Vote fraud myths meet voting rights reality Before she was allowed to register and vote for the first time in Franklin County, North Carolina, Rosanell Eaton had to read the entire preamble to the U.S. Constitution out loud in front of three men in the county courthouse.Eaton is black. The thr

    July 21, 2014 1 Story

  • Todd Akin's back again to talk of rape So, Todd Akin is back and he’s talking rape again.You remember what happened last time. The would-be Missouri senator torpedoed his campaign two years ago after suggesting in a TV interview that if a woman is a victim of “legitimate rape,” she is unl

    July 22, 2014

  • Sadness remains as two-year mark passes in cousins' case As most citizens of the Cedar Valley are well aware, July 13 marked two years since the disappearance of cousins Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook-Morrissey of Evansdale.The passage of time provides some semblance of healing, but the sadness, particul

    July 22, 2014

  • UI needs to keep its admission standards high There’s been a lot of talk lately — most of it coming from the leadership of the Iowa state Board of Regents — about the University of Iowa not being passionate enough about its recruitment of in-state undergraduates. Regent president Bruce Rastetter

    July 21, 2014

  • 7-21-14 David Helscher mug Prepare for possible effects of Fed's decisions It has been more than 5 years since the Federal Reserve has taken unprecedented steps to support the economy through purchases of Treasury and mortgage-backed debt securities. This has generally been called quantitative easing and has not been withou

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • What it was like as a teen

    Ten years ago today, I’d like to think I was checking out educational books to prepare myself for my upcoming journey through college.

    In reality, I was probably playing video games and thinking of ways to have fun, while trying not to get into too much trouble.

    July 20, 2014

  • Randy Meier Spoofing practices resurface Spoofing is the practice deliberately falsifying a telephone number and/or name relayed to the caller ID feature of a phone. This type of call right now is the number one phone scam I receive. Many people report receiving calls appearing on caller ID

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Impeaching the president Sarah Palin is right about impeaching President Obama.No, not that the president should be impeached. But Palin is correct in arguing that, for those who assert that Obama has grievously abused his executive authority, impeachment is the proper cours

    July 18, 2014

  • Celebrate the renovated bandshell? Yes, but... I attended the ribbon cutting for the renovated bandshell on July 1. I was a proud member of the Vision 8 team that enabled the project. However, the previous Friday night, June 27, I was also a member of the cast of “Annie Get Your Gun.”When the Nat

    July 18, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Posturing, predictions fly as SEC turns to a new season

    Little news is truly made at the Southeastern Conference's media days, where players and coaches predict, insinuate and deflect in advance of this fall's college football season.
     

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

With the Clinton County Justice Coordinating Commission and the Clinton County Board of Supervisors discussing proposals to construct a new jail, do you think the time has come for Clinton County to construct such a facility?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook