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Proposed Minimum Wage Increases

**Click here for updates on the current Kansas City minimum wage initiative**

All across the country, state and local governments have either increased the minimum wage or are looking to do so in the near future. AAHOA opposes efforts to raise the minimum wage because of its considerable potential to increase unemployment, adversely impact first-time job seekers and discourage employers from expanding their businesses.

As job creators and investors in local economies, hoteliers welcome discussions on how to increase opportunities for growth both at the national and local levels. The legislation would undermine hoteliers’ abilities to effectively run their businesses, as hotels operate under remarkably thin margins.  For small businesses, the ability to maintain and acquire employees is a delicate proposition and directives mandating small businesses absorb additional labor costs is unreasonable.  

AAHOA members firmly support the wellbeing of their employees.  For many small businesses, the relationship between employees and employers is very closely knit.  Therefore, it is important to understand the adverse impacts that drastically altering the wage structure will have on the ability for business owners to retain employees, hire new workers and grow their businesses.  It is important to understand that AAHOA members and millions of small business owners live and work in their local communities and they are ones responsible to make the payroll for their employees.  These community leaders want to invest locally and can only do so when they are assured of a stable and consistent employment environment.

Discussion Points

  • The Majority of AAHOA members already pay employees above the minimum wage
  • New staff usually start out at the minimum wage and their compensation is quickly increased, usually within 90 days
  • However, new mandated changes will dramatically affect wages across the entire pay scale by creating increased pressure on existing wages for veteran employees   
  • Small business owners who can afford to employ multiple workers at current wages may be unable to retain the same number of employees at higher wages
  • Employees are like family.  On average, hourly staff have been with the same hotel for 5 years or more
  • A higher minimum wage would make it more difficult for employers to hire additional workers due to increased labor costs
  • Entry-level workers will find it difficult to find jobs and enter the workforce
  • Increased costs will constrain hoteliers from growing their businesses and prevent them from investing more into the local economy