Attacks Against Tacoma's New Minimum Wage

Sarah Morken

The city of Tacoma is in the process of creating the rules of implementation for the new minimum wage law, which will raise the minimum wage to $10.35 in February 2016. Not surprisingly there are some anti-worker measures that the city is trying to slip in. These are above and beyond the anti-worker rules that are already in existing law.

The draft of the rules contains the following anti-worker provisions. 

  • Charge withdrawl: If a worker files a complaint about not being paid the minimum wage, and then withdraws that complaint, then they can never file another complaint against that employer. 
  • Mandatory tips as wages: If a restaurant or other business puts a mandatory tip or service fee on the bill, the amount received can be considered wages. This is a tip penalty. Washington state does not allow tip penalties. 
  • Non-discretionary bonuses (like the gain sharing that is received by multicare workers) could be considered part of wages. 
  • New definition of outside sales: An Employee who performs work outside the City, even if the Employer is based in the City, is not covered by the Ordinance for hours worked outside the City.
  • Leave Enforcement to the State: The city wants to push the responsibility of enforcing the law onto the state. 

You can see a copy of the draft of the minimum wage rules here.

Meet with the City of Tacoma

 The City of Tacoma is holding a pair of public meetings to respond to the draft.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

  • 5:30 - 6:30 PM
  • Tacoma Public Library Main Branch, Olympic Room
  • 1102 Tacoma Ave S Tacoma, WA 98402

Thursday, December 17, 2015

  • 10 - 11 AM
  • Tacoma Public Library Main Branch, Olympic Room
  • 1102 Tacoma Ave S, Tacoma, WA 98402

Public Comment

Add written and/or public comments to the process. Here is the email address.