Local Business Reacts to Minimum Wage Increase - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local Business Reacts to Minimum Wage Increase

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    Come January 1st, 2008, minimum wage will increase $0.14 cents. This will change the current state minimum wage from $7.93 cents to $8.07 cents. More >>
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KENNEWICK, Wash.--Duane Ruff of Ruff's Giant Burgers said he's no stranger to a minimum wage increase. In each of the last five years, the hourly wage has gone up.

Right now, Ruff has two employees of whom are making minimum wage, others slightly higher. And when a pay increase is given to some, everyone else wants to cash in.

Ruff admits he'll likely give his entire staff a raise next year. He's not really worried because this means certain changes will occur. To offset the wage bump, customers will end up paying more for the same food.

"We usually have to raise rates or raise prices in order to compensate for it," mentions Ruff. Not always the first but all of our providers will be raising their prices as their prices of labor go up also."

A study by Cornell University and University of Connecticut found that Washington State's minimum wage has increased $0.44 cents over the last two years.

For businesses with 20 entry-level employees, that's an extra $18,000 dollars per year.

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