[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text width=”1/1″ el_position=”first last”]The Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC), during its September Governmental Affairs Policy (GAP) meeting, voted to “oppose unless amended” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s current minimum wage increase proposal. The TACC believes that a city-by-city approach to minimum wage is not advantageous to the regional economy and could cause unusual enforcement procedures. Torrance businesses that conduct work-related travel or operate in-and-out of the Los Angeles city limits will likely be subject to pay the city of Los Angeles wage requirements for time spent inside city limits.

For example, if a Torrance business operates a warehouse located in Los Angeles, workers that are employed at the Torrance location but conduct travel to the city of Los Angeles location to inventory or pick up supplies will likely be required to receive the Los Angeles wage rate for the amount of time spent inside the city limits. A typical eight hour work day may require the Torrance business to pay an employee the Los Angeles wage for three hours and the City of Torrance wage for the other five hours.

“We feel this is not just a City of Los Angeles issue but a Torrance Area issue as well. We are currently working to identify businesses in our area that operate in and out of Los Angeles city limits that could be impacted by a City of Los Angeles wage mandate,” says TACC President & CEO, Donna Duperron. “The Torrance Area is in a unique situation,” she adds, “a substantial amount of our business members are located just outside Torrance city limits in the Harbor Gateway and will be required to pay any City of Los Angeles wage mandates.” Businesses located in the Harbor Gateway have a Torrance mailing address but are regulated by the City of Los Angeles.

Not only would a Los Angeles minimum wage increase be a possible logistical nightmare for effected Torrance businesses, it would also expound upon a state minimum wage increase that took effect only a few short months ago. As businesses reconsider five year business models in order to be in accordance with the newest wage law (an additional increase to $13.25/hr within three years, which is the Mayor’s proposal), is a substantial unfunded mandate on businesses still recovering from the great recession.

 “Raising the minimum wage when a state increase was just negotiated and approved is unnecessary and adds great uncertainty to businesses trying to establish strategic business plans,” says Rob Van Lingen, Torrance business owner and Chair of the TACC GAP group. Van Lingen adds, “It is important for policymakers to understand that an increase to minimum wage elicits graduated wage increases across the employment spectrum. The graduated increase is what often results in job loss, less opportunities for entry level positions, and places businesses at greater risk to go out of business.”

The TACC agrees, and supports improving wages and quality of life for workers, so long as such raises do not leave businesses in desperation. If businesses cannot afford these wage hikes, unwanted consequences, including job loss, will negatively impact the economy.

“We feel the state has taken action on minimum wage and that action needs to be allowed to play out,” says Duperron.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_separator height_2=”25″ height=”25″ show_border=”yes_border”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/4″][vc_column_text]brandon-matson[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_column_text width=”1/1″ el_position=”first last”]

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Brandon Matson

Brandon is the Governmental Affairs Coordinator for the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce. His primary responsibilities include facilitating the Chamber’s Governmental Affairs Policy (GAP) group, planning Chamber events with legislators, and facilitating the Chamber’s Political Action Committee (PAC). Feel free to contact him at any time.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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