“Increase City Workers Minimum Wage” – City Council Wrap Up 9/1/2020

During Tuesday’s City Council meeting, Councilman Stokes introduced a plan to increase the minimum wage of Jackson’s city employees to $15 an hour. “Working poor is just a bad situation, not just here in Jackson but throughout the Nation. Even though $15 per hour may seem like a good deal of money, in the large scheme of things it’s not. People are working two or three jobs just to support their family.” Stokes stated flatly.

Councilman Stamps voiced support for an increase in city pay, but was direct in where he saw the city’s biggest obstacles to increasing minimum wage; “I don’t know if we can get there without a commitment from our governing body that says we’re going to put public works back to work”, maintaining that the answer to higher pay for city workers lay in the city making a commitment to do less contracting. Stamps called for more work to be done by city workers instead of contracting the work. “ We could pay our city employees, we could balance out our contributions, we could balance out our health care if we made a commitment to do less contracting. The city does pay a living wage.. to contractors.”

Mayor Lumumba expressed complete agreement with councilman Stoke’s item on the agenda. “ I have always supported the Fight for 15. I have a principled belief in the idea of being self-determined. The more self-determined we can be as a city the more flexibility and control we have over our destiny as a city.” 

Councilman Tillman urged the council to put this in Committee by next budget year, noting that “we as a people have always been on the bottom of everything. We have families, students that are in school. They want to participate in different activities that cost money and rightfully so, and minimum wage just goes so far.”  The item was put into the planning committee. 

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