Connecticut Raises Minimum Wage to $10.10

By:  Bob Adelmann
Connecticut Raises Minimum Wage to $10.10

Connecticut will be raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour — bad move.

In a remarkable display of hubris and economic ignorance, Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy proudly announced on Thursday that his state is the first to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour:

This is just a step in moving people in the right direction.

We will be lifting people out of poverty in the state of Connecticut. Increasing the minimum wage is not just good for workers, it’s also good for business.

What the new law will really do as it is phased in over the next three years is move people out of the state, just as they have been for the last two decades. More than 10 percent of Connecticut’s population — including small business owners who currently employ half of all workers in the state — have moved away to states such as Florida (no income tax) and Texas (no income tax).

That reality has yet to register with Malloy, however, nor with Speaker of the House Brendan Sharkey, who helped push through the legislation: "Raising the minimum wage helps people who need it the most, is good for the economy, and is the right thing to do."

Wrong on all counts. When Bob Funk, the head of Express Employment Professionals, quizzed 1,213 small business owners from around the country how they would act if the minimum wage were raised nationally (as President Obama wants), he learned that one out of five of them would lay off some of their employees, while two in five said they would reduce hiring in the future. Half of them said they would be forced to raise their prices to cover the increased labor costs.

Just the thing to stimulate the economy in Connecticut.

There was one voice of reason speaking out against the raise: Patrick O’Neill, a spokesman for the House Republican minority:

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