Worcester forum examines...

Worcester forum examines ups, downs of minimum wage hike

Full and original article posted on Telegram.com

It would give nearly 1 million Massachusetts workers a raise, including 41 percent of workers in Worcester. But while raising the minimum wage to $15 may sound like an easy thing to support, experts Tuesday morning cautioned that the issue has more complex repercussions.

“It’s a complicated issue,” said Timothy J. McGourthy, executive director of The Research Bureau, which issued a January report “Minimizing Risk: The Implications of a $15 Minimum Wage for Worcester.”

The discussion comes as a bill in the state House of Representatives filed by Worcester Democrat Rep. Daniel M. Donahue seeks to raise the $11 minimum wage to $12 this year and to $15 by 2021. Voters could also face a ballot question this year about whether to raise the minimum wage to $12 an hour in 2019 and $15 an hour in 2022. Both efforts tie the minimum wage to the cost-of-living index and also raise the minimum wage of $3.75 an hour paid to workers who receive tips, such as waiters and bartenders.

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