A push to increase minimum wage could affect small business - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

A push to increase minimum wage could affect small business

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If voters approve, minimum wage workers in South Dakota could get a raise.

The South Dakota Democratic Party sponsored a petition to put raising the minimum wage to a vote.

One local business tells us how it responded to the news.

Many small business owners in our area tell me they already pay above the minimum wage.

But there are some positions that offer lower pay.

We spoke with a manager at a Dairy Queen here in Sioux Falls who told me if the minimum wage goes up, there will be some winners and some losers.

Some fast food workers might enjoy getting a raise if the minimum wage goes up to $8.50 an hour.

Dairy Queen Assistant Manager Devon Flying Hawk said "it would sure help our employees because I know that living costs are going up, it does affect the business though."

But Flying Hawk is concerned about the extra expense.

"We have to pay for everything else that entails a store, it's paid for, and it comes from what we do make, so if we did have to give everyone $8.50 and raise minimum wage, yeah, it would affect us," Flying Hawk said.

The South Dakota Democratic Party sponsored a petition to put raising the minimum wage to a vote. Party leader Zach Crago believes it's good for business.

"Workers with more money in their pockets will spend that money right there in their local economy, at a local business," Crago said.

But it could also affect a local business getting more help in the kitchen or at the counter.

"It would affect how many employees we can have, what they would be making, what somebody who had experience would come in, it would affect what they would be making too," Flying Hawk said.

And for those already hard at work, it could be the last raise some fast food workers would get for some time.

"If you start at $8.50, it's going to be harder for you to get a higher raise, because you can only go so far, especially in the fast food industry," Flying Hawk said.

Jason Gant, the Secretary of State confirmed he's received the petition.

Once the signatures are verified, the initiated measure will be put on the ballot next year.
and if voters approve, then workers could see their raise in January 2015.

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