Minimum wage hike would cost jobs

For 45 years, Scaff’s Enterprises has manufactured quality products in Clinton Country for sportsmen across the USA.

Although we have had our share of challenges mainly from foreign imports we have survived thanks to customer loyalty and our wonderful family of employees.

Americans are living in harsh economic times and small businesses have been especially hard hit by new taxes, mandates and regulations levied by government. Now, when we can least afford it, we face a new challenge as some elected officials are fighting to increase the minimum wage to $10.10 or more.

Increasing the minimum wage is an easy flag elected officials can wave to campaign for votes to keep their own job.

But the truth is that elected officials would not be affected by this change to the law. American workers are affected. Higher minimum wages sounds great initially, until people consider the many negative consequences that come with it.

It not only increases costs for new hires, but it also means that current employee wages will need to increase to stay ahead of the ‘new hire’ rate. This will have a serious impact on the way employers run their business.

Elected officials calling for this mandated-wage hike need to consider the choices small businesses will face in order to meet the costs associated with it. Businesses will scale back hiring and reduce promotions; halt planned expansions to benefit packages and vacation time; cut annual bonuses; and eliminate overtime hours.

In some circumstances, businesses may be forced to reduce full-time jobs to part-time positions that do not qualify for benefits packages. The bottom line is that for a young person entering the workforce, a minimum wage hike is great if they can get hired.

But for any experienced American worker trying to make a living or raise a family, the minimum wage hike will hurt them.

In four decades, no time has been as difficult for small businesses the backbone of American jobs than the past six years. Government intrusion on day-to-day operations has reached peak intensity.

It seems like each new policy or executive order crushes more jobs and kills more businesses. I wish people would really consider the impact of all these policies, and tell their elected officials to work for us not against us.

We need officials who want to save American jobs, not eliminate them under the guise of wage hikes. More importantly, we need a government that wants to help small businesses, not hurt us.

Long is head of Scaff’s Enterprises Inc., which is headquartered in Loganton.