January 04, 2007

One more reason why I hate bleeding-heart liberals

Here is a true story of what happens when the minimum wage is increased by law. Ohio increased their minimum wage by $1.70 an hour, effective January 1st. My company has half of its eight movie theaters in Ohio. In order to be able to afford the increased payroll without raising ticket prices (which negatively impacts business), the company has cut hours by instituting only one show on weeknights--theaters which had been playing movies at 5 and 8 are now only showing 7pm sets. So, a concessions clerk who worked from 4:30 to 9 on a weeknight at $5.15 an hour is now working from 6:30 to 8 for $6.85 an hour. Their day's wages have gone from $23 to $10.25. Let's say they still work 4 and a half hours on Saturday and so earn $31 for that day instead of the $23 they previously would have made. They are still making $5.00 less now than they would have without the wage increase.

But now we have the ripple effect--because theater costs have increased from their vendors as a result of their increased payroll costs, cutting show times in the Ohio theaters alone is not going to help make up revenue--so hours are being cut here in Indiana, too, even though our state's minimum wage is still $5.15. That means that an employee of mine who was earning $25* on a weeknight is now going to make $8.25, with no increase for the time they work on Saturday.

I expect to lose a few employees, especially the adults for whom this is a second job and it's just not worth the cost of gasoline to come in for an hour. There won't be any point in replacing them, either. I'll probably lose my Assistant Manager, too--his hours are being cut by half as a result of this.

Thanks, Ohio. I hope I can do something just as nice for you sometime soon...

*My theater pays $5.50/hour, despite minimum wage being $5.15

Posted by Susie at January 4, 2007 10:42 AM | TrackBack

I forgot to mention that there was no raise for Susie at the first of the year, either. Thanks again, Ohio!

Posted by: Susie at January 4, 2007 10:53 AM

The trickle effect of the economy in action. You're so lucky to be able to witness it first hand right away.

Posted by: Contagion at January 5, 2007 06:15 PM

You obviously don't care about the children. Fascist!

Sorry. My anti-moonbat hat wasn't working and I channeled Kos for a second, which is a pretty rotten thing. On the other hand, at least I didn't start screeching like a spider monkey and eating my own poo like some them seem to, so I'll count it as a net plus.

Posted by: physics geek at January 8, 2007 05:32 PM

This can't be true.

I've been told all my life that raising the minimum wage is a GOOD thing and helps working families.

Now here YOU come, trying to confuse me with all these silly facts, which I refuse to believe because they conflict with the promise of good intentions.

You're SUCH a bad person! :-P

Posted by: Harvey at January 9, 2007 07:33 PM

For your boss to cut labor in Indiana because of wage increase in Ohio is childish...like a screaming little brat who gets disciplined by a parent then takes out his anger on a younger sibling.

Besides, won't "instituting only one show on weeknights" ALSO negatively impact business? If not, then perhaps cut out ALL shows. That will really save on labor!

Also, won't a full time employee of McDonald's (for example), who now could earn an additional $68 per week, be more likely to splurge on an extra movie or two per week? So, shouldn't the number of showtimes be INCREASED to accommodate any newly earned expendable income that Ohio teens will have?

Regardless of which analytical profile one may choose to espouse on the subject, hasn't it been established that only career politicians deserve 33% raises?


Posted by: PK at January 11, 2007 08:24 AM

Actually, PK, it's more like a parent whose taxes suddenly doubled cutting both kids' allowances. And what about McDonald's, when the kids who work at the theater can't afford to buy hamburgers? McD's will have to cut hours or increase prices at some point, because for every major corporation that can absorb the increased costs (in the short run, anyway) there are 8 or 9 small businesses that can't. Besides which, even Wal-mart starts their employees at far above minimum wage. It's the mom-and-pop small businesses that are being hurt, and, unlike the government, they can't pretend they can spend more money than they take in without going bankrupt...

Posted by: Susie at January 11, 2007 09:56 AM