LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Posted February 11, 2019
Recently, Senate Democrats, via the introduction of Senate Bill 1, are pushing for a massive minimum wage increase over six years from the current rate of $8.25 to $15 by 2025. This kind of wage hike creates a hostile environment of epic proportions toward the small and medium business (SMB) community, the very environment which runs 90 percent of Illinois.
This recent push of socialism by our state legislature mandates that businesses pay higher wages, a desperate attempt to prevent the continued outmigration which has taken place over the past decade. When there’s a looming income tax hike under Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s progressive tax, this would only cancel out any wage increases and the outmigration continues.
As with any income increase, whether it be the annual cost-of-living increase on Social Security, SSI or SSDI or a wage increase imposed by the employer, the cost of groceries, goods and services always manage to go up soon after it goes into effect. This will not change with the minimum wage hikes through 2025; these costs will continue to hike. You think groceries are expensive now? Imagine how expensive it will be come 2025. Grocery prices will become ridiculously prohibitive, although it would pale in comparison to the Venezuelan food crisis.
It is sad when your politicians in Springfield do not understand economics and make rash decisions that ultimately hurt the heartbeat of this state, the SMB community. Their promotion of socialism combined with Keynesian economic theory only proves their fiscal incompetence and fiscal illiteracy.
As someone who studies the Austrian school of economic theory quite often as a Libertarian anarcho-capitalist, I could say that fellow scholars (living and dead) like Milton and Thomas Friedman, Thomas Sowell, Steven Horowitz, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, Jean-Baptiste Say and my personal favorite, Murray Rothbard, would agree that governmental mandates to increase wages is a bad idea. Any and all wage increases should be under the authority of our businesses, not some government mandate which hurts our small businesses in the long run, potentially putting them out of business by 2025.
Should SB1 actually pass and is signed into law by Pritzker, your local small businesses will need your patronage more than ever or you will see a common thread which exists all over Illinois: continued residential outmigration with our business districts and Main Street businesses either increasing their prices to survive, shutting down for good or pulling out their stakes and relocating their business to a state that isn’t hostile to businesses compared to Illinois.
It may also result in the end of employees being hired as W-2 employees under an unsustainable minimum wage hike plan and the beginning of the same being hired as 1099 contractors, removing the burden of tax liabilities on the employer.
While it has passed through the Senate, it is important that you reach out to your legislators in the Illinois House of Representatives, asking them to vote NO to this bill.
House District 95: Avery Bourne (R-Raymond; 324-5200, 782-8071)
House District 96: Sue Scherer (D-Decatur; 877-9636, 524-0353)
House District 101: Dan Caulkins (R-Decatur; 876-1968, 782-8163)
House District 102: Brad Halbrook (R-Shelbyville; 774-1306, 782-1275)
South Central Illinois Regional Advocate
National Federation of Independent Business