Cleveland City Council debates raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour

Cleveland City Council debates raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - It's a conversation happening in many states all over the country: raise minimum wage or keep it the same?

Earlier this month, City Council proposed legislation that would raise the minimum wage from $8.10 an hour to $15 an hour.

Currently, Ohio's minimum wage is $8.10 -- $0.85 higher than the federal rate of $7.25.

Councilman Zack Reed supports the hike, but says it's the timeline that concerns him.

"We should do something about raising the minimum wage, but to raise it to $15 in one full swoop would not be the best prudent way of getting those individuals who deserve a raise, a raise," he said.

Economists say there's never been an increase of this magnitude anywhere. If the city passes this ordinance by Jan. 1, 2017, Cleveland would have the highest minimum wage in the country.

Those in support say the hike should be gradual so that it doesn't hurt employers.

"We at City Council should give them the raise, but to do it in a dramatic fashion on the first day of 2017 will be harmful to our business community," said Councilman Reed.

City Council wants to hear from the business community over the next couple of weeks.

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